Psychology Essay

2869 words - 12 pages

ENG 120
Children and television: A lethal combination?

Many people believe that television can be good for young children and it helps to develop their mind before they attend school. While this may be true, it may also has an overall negative effect on children. Television can be lethal because it teaches children and culturally structures their mind. If a program on television shows a person eating spaghetti with his hands and a child watches this, then the child with think that it can be ok to eat spaghetti with his/her hands. In the developing stage of a child’s mind, everything that is being exposed to them is going to have a profound effect on them. We could say that ...view middle of the document...

In the short clip you can notice the effect that seeing the violence of the doll had on the children’s actions towards the doll. “When the children were placed inside the room with the bobo doll they started to beat and whack it just like they were shown to do.”(Bandura,575) . This can be a perfect example of how television influences children’s behavior. Exposing children to these types of programs or shows on television allows children to socially accept these behaviors and slowly begins to desensitize them. “Desensitization refers to, in this case, the way in which a child has observed violence in such as large amount, that to see incidents of violence in everyday life is norm.” (Wilson,97). In these cases, the child loses their sense of right and wrong. Then children are more susceptible to be more deviant and aggressive to others and think that its normal to be like this because it’s what they were exposed too. Many other experiments were conducted for this research. Dr. Thomas N. Robinson, a professor of pediatrics at Stanford conducted a study. He divided 565 parents of children ages 3 to 5 into two groups. Both were told to track their children’s media consumption in a diary that the researchers assessed for violent, didactic and prosocial content. After six months, parents in the group receiving advice about television-watching said their children were somewhat less aggressive with others, compared with those in the control group. The children who watched less-violent shows also scored higher on measures of social competence, a difference that persisted after one year. This study proves that children who watch violence on television are more likely to become more aggressive and this is very harmful to children’s minds because they are at the age where their brains are developing and it tends to have a long lasting effect on their behavior. If a child is exposed to these certain types of content at a young age then when they are older, they have a chance of being menaces to society. Of course, watching television can also be a good thing: Preschoolers can get help learning the alphabet on public television, shows such as Dora the Explorer and Blues Clues have beneficial teaching this that can be instilled in children. Grade schoolers can learn about wildlife on nature shows and learn something new every day. Parents can keep up with current events on the evening news. Lately, kids' TV shows have begun promoting some positive agendas such as healthy living and environmental awareness. As kids see their favorite characters making positive choices, they will be influenced in a good way. However studies have shown that in 53% of households of 7th- to 12th-graders, there are no rules about TV watching. (Boyse,24.). There is no guarantee that this can be the only thing you child can be exposed too.
Television also plays an important role on child development. As stated earlier, the most crucial age for child development is...

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