How Television Affects Children
October 28, 2012
How Television Affects Children
Did you know that a study that was reported by the American Academy of Pediatrics discovered that there is more violence in children’s programming than any other programming?(Adams, 2010) Today’s children are influenced by what they see and hear on television whether they are watching a cartoon or an educational program. While some television shows are educational, television can have a more serious effect on a child, like disruptive behavior and obesity.
At times, television may seem like a good idea. Many people use it for a source of entertainment, especially in children. There are some ...view middle of the document...
Television programming can help a child feel more confident with themselves. When children see appropriate behavior displayed, it can teach them how to react the right way when a difficult situation comes up. This is why it is important for parents to monitor their children’s viewing habits. A child’s brain is like a sponge. It can soak up everything that it sees and hears.
While some people believe that there are positive effects from watching TV, there have been many studies conducted that show that television has many negative effects on a child. When a child watches a television program that contains violence, it can raise the risk of that child behaving more aggressively. “Children who view shows in which violence is very realistic, frequently repeated, or unpunished, are more likely to imitate what they see” (Children and TV Violence, 2011, para.4). 200,000 acts of violence will be witnessed by a child on the television by the time that they are an adult. There are many shows which are for children that contain stereotypes, rude behavior, and when solving problems they are depicted in a mean way. This is not how parents want their children to learn things in life. There are also many programs and commercials that show inappropriate behavior or risky behaviors. Smoking, doing drugs, drinking alcohol, and engaging in sexual activity can be seen as a fun experience, but these actions do not depict the consequences that are a result from them. While cigarette ads have been banned from television, the ads for alcohol have increased. Children can still be exposed to people smoking cigarettes in movies and TV programs while the alcohol ads are witnessed by more underage children. This can at times even influence drinking at an early age. These advertisements along with many other advertisements are seen as a negative influence. Ads do not always portray true information about the product that they are advertising and if they are geared toward children then those children often believe what the advertisement is saying. Television can also have a negative effect on a child’s health. Many commercials which are viewed by children advertise junk food. These commercials can encourage a child to eat junk food and that it is all right to do so. Television viewing can take away the time that should be spent by doing healthy activities, like reading and playing outdoors. When children decide to watch TV over participating in extracurricular activities then it can start to become a problem. Mary G. Burke writes, “What aren’t children doing when watching? Most fundamentally, they aren’t moving” (“Reason to Turn Off the Screen,” 2005, p.50). There have been many studies that link television viewing with obesity in children. Whether a child is watching an educational program or a cartoon, that child is still just sitting on a couch and eating. They are not socializing, reading, or being physically active. TV viewing can even affect how a child performs in...