Parents, Children and Television Essay

Parents, Children and Television Essay

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Television is the dominant source of amusement for present day American children. There is a vast amount of literature professing how media influences children’s beliefs and behavior. As a mother, I refuse to allow a television set to give my son a real world education. Parents, we must take a stand and control the way our youth views media to allow for a positive and healthy childhood.
One way to reduce the impact of television on children is offering less TV in the home. A study published in Pediatrics, an academic journal, acknowledges how most parents do not regulate their child’s TV usage habitually. (Donnerstein and Strasburger, par. 3) Parents, we must set limits for our children. Not allowing your child to have a television set in their bedroom will limit their TV viewing. However, there are many other reasons children should not have a TV set in their bedroom. Pediatrics for Parents published a study done by The American Academy of Pediatrics titled “TV Watching and Social Skill” where they report “children with a TV in their bedroom have more sleep problems and less emotional reactivity” (N.A., par. 3). Another idea is to purchase “television-budgeting devices” (Munson and Smith, par. 2). “Boob-tube kids” in Prevention magazine informs parents about devices that “block out certain hours of viewing time” on televisions. (Munson and Smith, par. 4) The article points out that “TV budgeting devices are not widely available” but is gaining popularity. (Munson and Smith, par. 5)
Increasing family activities will directly lead to your child watching less TV. Inventing family rituals that are applicable to your home environment will increase family unity. Establishing a dinner time routine will have multiple payoffs...

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... Smarter TV Viewing” author Brain Stonehill claims “the quality of our viewing – and thus, in a media saturated world, the quality of our lives – depends on the care we take in making our choices of what to watch and what to turn off”. (Stonehill, par. 5)
TV is part of our culture so parents need to evaluate how their child interacts with today’s media technology. As an element in today’s youth, TV should be incorporated in a way that minimizes the negative effects on childhood. Marie Winn, author of “Television: The Plug-In-Drug”, notes how “parents have accepted a television-dominated family life” (Winn 437). This attitude is no longer acceptable in parenthood. Parents must dictate adolescents’ media consumption making sure it is not abused or overused. Simply staying involved with a child’s media exposure will help alleviate the destructive impact on childhood.

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