DVD in car

Submitted: Tuesday, May 06, 2008 at 16:21
ThreadID: 57329 Views:2218 Replies:7 FollowUps:10
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Surely been discussed many times, but recently I looked at it from different angle. Had parked my car and noticed that nearby one have two screens attached to head restrains. Nothing that unusual nowadays, but what catch my eyes is fact that there was toddler seat behind one of them. That got me thinking – is this really that good? Sure it is possible to eliminate (partially :-)))) “Are we here yet?”, but I been always seeing long trips as the best opportunity to communicate to my kids. What the point of having DVD/TV/electronic games on camping trip where sole purpose of it is to rest from all this stuff and enjoy Mother Nature? Is in general this global “gadgetelisation” is that good?


PS I am out of question – my “kids” are not kids anymore – just general curiosity.
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Reply By: robak (QLD) - Tuesday, May 06, 2008 at 16:33

Tuesday, May 06, 2008 at 16:33
It's only bad of you think that "are we there yet?" is quality communication.

As a lot of people have their TV on all day everyday at home (in the background) so why not the car as well.

For what it's worth, we got rid of our TV nearly a year ago as we thought our then 2 year old was watching too much.


AnswerID: 302346

Follow Up By: Member - Serg (VIC) - Tuesday, May 06, 2008 at 16:52

Tuesday, May 06, 2008 at 16:52

My kids never annoyed me with “Are we here yet” – that problem never exists in our car. Despite we get from Melbourne to Gold Coast (and eventually back) by car in one day as many as 5 times. Chatting, verbal games, books etc keep us busy, And as you said – TV/DVD is at home each day and every day – why not get rest from it? And when my younger one became gets too bored I gave him map and ask to navigate to figure out when we about to arrive. He became very proficient in navigation at 12 years of age - better then SWMBO, in fact much better. As least never mix left and right. LOL.

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Follow Up By: Ozboc - Wednesday, May 07, 2008 at 14:17

Wednesday, May 07, 2008 at 14:17
you go from melb to gold coast in one day driving ???? --- Lucky you don't have to keep a log book to show to RTA inspectors ....

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Follow Up By: Member - Serg (VIC) - Wednesday, May 07, 2008 at 14:54

Wednesday, May 07, 2008 at 14:54
5 times, one as solo driver. And will do it again if needed. Start at 2am and depending on luck arriving at 9 or 10 pm. No overspeeding.

FollowupID: 568541

Reply By: Member - Steve (Townsville) - Tuesday, May 06, 2008 at 16:42

Tuesday, May 06, 2008 at 16:42
We bought one for the long trips on the black top from Canberra to Townsville to visit my parents-in-law. We go inland and there isn't a lot for them to look at.

One thing we've found is our daughter who suffers badly from car sickness (actually we all do - the clean up is awful) travels better, as long as the dvd is going she's fine now.

But then again someone we know has a child who is the opposite and if she watched dvd in the car gets sick!

AnswerID: 302351

Follow Up By: Member - Serg (VIC) - Tuesday, May 06, 2008 at 16:59

Tuesday, May 06, 2008 at 16:59

Our older one had very bad motion sickness – could not sit in car for more then an hour at age of 9. Thankfully this usually goes away with age. We been really struggling until someone suggest “antimotion” pills – you can get one from any pharmacy without prescription. Helps us enormously. And a year or two later became totally redundant. Also what I find out it is heaps better look straight ahead instead of to side. So put her in the middle of rear seat or if big enough on first seat.

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Follow Up By: Member - Steve (Townsville) - Tuesday, May 06, 2008 at 18:53

Tuesday, May 06, 2008 at 18:53
Thanks Serg,

But I think she's mostly grown out of it, and having the dvd stopped her looking out the window and I think that helped.

We just use it on the black top, we turn it off when in interesting places or 4wding. They also have other stuff they take with them to keep themselves occupied.

Over three days of travelling we manage to have a healthy balance of quiet time (DVD's), family discussions (sometimes noisy ones), and our fair share of eye spy.

What ever works for each family is fine by me, ours is happy having a DVD player as a 'part' of our travelling experience.

FollowupID: 568416

Reply By: Sand Man (SA) - Tuesday, May 06, 2008 at 16:43

Tuesday, May 06, 2008 at 16:43
I'm with you Serg.

I couldn't think of anything worse than having kids watching DVD's while traveling and holidaying in the outback, rather than absorbing "life".

I can say the same for both children and adults watching TV at the campsite. It astounds me why people are so conditioned they cannot do without this form of entertainment for a week or so.

Remove this crap and suddenly a whole new world is apparent.
Look at the clouds in the sky.
Lay back at night and look at the stars.
Listen to the sounds of Nature.
Gaze at the flames of the campfire.

The one thing I don't miss is the lack of television.
And although I have a Laptop for other purposes, I do not take a library of DVD's on holiday with me.

Hell, I don't even buy the paper. I want to "escape".



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AnswerID: 302353

Follow Up By: Member - Roachie (SA) - Tuesday, May 06, 2008 at 17:28

Tuesday, May 06, 2008 at 17:28
G'day Bill,

Annette and I followed that philosophy for the past 12 years or so and by the end of any trip longer than about 2 hours, my voice was hoarse from having to yell at the boys all the time. They simply could not amuse themselves with the myriad of gear that we carried. All manner of books, games, I-spy, etc etc. The only thing I never actually tried (which I sort of wish I had...and still could I guess), is those talking books.

Anyway, I bit the bullet several months ago and installed a $300- roof-mounted dvd player. I bought some reasonably cheap dvds off ebay and from Woolies. The boys each have a pair of infra-red headphones which hang up behind them when not in use.

It really does keep them quiet.

I agree it would be great if they could absorb all the sights around them as we scoot along at 100k/h along the h'way. The reality is that kids have a very short span of attention and there are only so many interesting looking salt bushes or games of I spy that you can play during the course of the day. Spotting roos and emus is old-hat for kids accustomed to driving in the bush too. When we stop they are eager to explore etc, but the travelling side of it is just plain brain-numbingly boring.

One game I have devised but have yet to try them on, involved a bit of work on the computer...... I typed up 10 pages of numbers (in order), from 001 to 100.....and 101 to 200....and 201 to 300 etc etc.

I plan to give each boy a sheet with his 100 numbers on it (different numbered sheet for each one) and let them mark off a number when they see it on a car/truck's number plate, distance marker etc. I know they'll probably cheat, but it'll be Annette's job to try and keep them honest. Just to make it interesting, I will tell them that the person who is the pre-selected order of completion, will get a chocolate etc..... (It may be the 2nd person to get their sheet filled in; but they won't know until they've all finished; they can draw straws to determine whether it's 1st, 2nd or 3rd place-getter who gets the choc).

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Follow Up By: Patrolman Pat - Tuesday, May 06, 2008 at 18:00

Tuesday, May 06, 2008 at 18:00
My kids watch DVDs on every long trip on the black top and I don't blame them. You can only play I Spy for so long and reading in the car makes them feel a bit crook. I get a great deal of pleasure out of driving but being a passenger in a car to me is one of the most boring things in the world, endless hours of watching what isoften boring countryside outside roll by.
I'll wager those that don't like DVDs in cars don't dribve for hours without the radio/UHF etc on to amuse them. As much as I'd like to think I'm rivetting company my kids don't want to talk to me for hours on end above the noise of the diesel engine/wind noise/swearing truckers ;) that fills the cab.
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Follow Up By: Sand Man (SA) - Wednesday, May 07, 2008 at 09:35

Wednesday, May 07, 2008 at 09:35
Yeah, perhaps you guys have more current experience with youngsters than I.

I will concede that DVD's could be an asset while traveling, but surely not after arriving at your destination.



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Follow Up By: Member - Pesty (SA) - Wednesday, May 07, 2008 at 19:28

Wednesday, May 07, 2008 at 19:28
Good thought Sandman, was about to ask how long since you travelled with a car full of young kids?
I know you dont haahah.
Our kids are grown up and we are now in the position of taking up to 3 grandkids with us on a regular basis.
Wish they were around 25 years ago.
Last year we took 3 grandkids to ceduna while we were babysitting for a week, and at the last minute we bought a dvd.
BEST thing we could have done.
6 & 3 year old's and 10 month old travelled excellent, feed them, change them and put on a dvd and we had to keep checking to see if they were still there LOL
Yes we do take it camping as sometimes when weather is less than kind or after dark/tea before bed we will put a dvd on to wind them down ready for bed. They get heaps out of there camping and exploring so the two can mix well, not to mention the peace for a couple of old farts !!! LOL

Cheers Pesty

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Reply By: Hairy (NT) - Tuesday, May 06, 2008 at 18:45

Tuesday, May 06, 2008 at 18:45
Depends how you use it?
Ive got one for my kids....they would only watch one movie a day, never use it why there is anything to look at and turn it off when we come into towns.
If you travel around 1500km in a day, they have done the trip a dozen times before and there is jack $hiit to look at I cant see anything wrong with it. You can only play "I spy" or "throw the chip at the road sign" for so many hours.

AnswerID: 302382

Reply By: Brian - Tuesday, May 06, 2008 at 18:50

Tuesday, May 06, 2008 at 18:50
Our DVD is a roof mounted one and our kids are now 18 and 15. They travel well, and when we are in an area where there is great scenery to look at, we encourage them to look at it.

But the fact is, a lot travel is on roads where there is no 'spectacular' scenery to engage kids eyes. Appreciation of outback scenery is something that NONE of get until we are old enough to appreciate it.

So the boys watch DVD's while we are travelling, our rule is that once we arrive at our camp or POI, the DVD is off-limits till we are travelling again.

AnswerID: 302383

Reply By: Gronk - Wednesday, May 07, 2008 at 13:55

Wednesday, May 07, 2008 at 13:55
Best invention ever made for a car......just wish they were out 20yrs ago !!
As has been said.....a 2 or 4 yr old isn't interested in looking at the scenery, and there are only so many games you can play with them seated safely in the back..

As they get older, then maybe its time for them to take in the "scenery", but how you get a 10yr old to appreciate the bush is beyond me..but then mine are over 20yrs old..
AnswerID: 302488

Reply By: Ozboc - Wednesday, May 07, 2008 at 14:16

Wednesday, May 07, 2008 at 14:16
with 4 kids ------ Not having it on -- 2 hour car drive = Fighting - screaming - throwing stuff around the cabin - arguments - crying - the endless -- ARE WE THERE YET .....

With the dvd on --- quiet ( except for the sound from the dvd ) then the only fight we hear for 2 min is when one movie finishes and who chooses the next one .... ( we end up choosing to stop them arguing )

the portable dvd has saved the kids from being ejected from car at freeway speed ..... ;)

AnswerID: 302492

Follow Up By: baldman - Wednesday, May 07, 2008 at 17:46

Wednesday, May 07, 2008 at 17:46
Know the feeling, on a recent trip to Adelaide we left the DVD's at home and suffered all the way there.

Before leaving Adelaide we had loaded all our photos onto a disk and armed with a pen and paper our 12 year old could view and chose the photos he liked and because it was fresh in his mind he wrote a summary on each photo. He later used this in a school project.

We now tend to use it as an educational aid.

After visiting a place of interest and travelling to the next place our son is incharge of viewing and summarising all our photos using the car DVD player.

FollowupID: 568594

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