Help Prevent Violence on TV
Why Take A Stand?
Over 1,000 research studies in the past 50 years show there is a relationship between viewing violence in television programs and movies with aggressive behavior in children, youth, and adults. According to Bushman, children are more vulnerable because they are more easily impressionable and children have a harder time distinguishing between fantasy and reality.
Research has shown three major effects of viewing violence on television:
- Children may become less sensitive to the pain and suffering of others.
- Children may be more fearful.
- Children may be more likely to behave in aggressive or harmful ways toward others.
Violent Television Programs and Video Games
A typical American child spends an average of 28 hours a week, which is nearly 3 to 4 hours a day, watching television. When looking at the total of television, music, and video games, children between the ages of 8-18 spend more than 40 hours a week in these activities. Children may be exposed to as many as 5 violent acts per hour during prime time and an average of 26 violent acts per hour during Saturday morning children’s programs.
Children spend many hours learning from television, movie, and video game characters. These media characters appeal to the audio, visual, and kinetics modes of learning, making them very stimulating to young audiences. If caution is not taken; these media methods can minimize the presence of parents, teachers, and other adults in the community as role models. Repeated exposure over time strengthens the learning of observed violent acts.
When it comes to entertainment and children, grown-ups need to evaluate the media the child watches.
- Know what your child is watching and playing.
- If your child already has violent video games or movies, explain why they are harmful and get rid of them. Offer to buy new, nonviolent movies or games and give your child some choice in selecting nonviolent TV programs, movies, and games.
- If, after viewing TV or playing a video game, your child is aggressive, cranky, or scared, make a different choice.
Every household can take a stand and stamp out violence in their entertainment.
Reprinted with the permission of the University of Missouri. © 2008 — Curators of the University of Missouri
Add your own comment
- Kindergarten Sight Words List
- The Five Warning Signs of Asperger's Syndrome
- First Grade Sight Words List
- Graduation Inspiration: Top 10 Graduation Quotes
- 10 Fun Activities for Children with Autism
- What Makes a School Effective?
- Child Development Theories
- Should Your Child Be Held Back a Grade? Know Your Rights
- Why is Play Important? Social and Emotional Development, Physical Development, Creative Development
- Smart Parenting During and After Divorce: Introducing Your Child to Your New Partner