What is your child NOT doing while watching TV?
By John Rosemond from Knight-Ridder Newspapers
According to the latest Nielson figures, Americans’ preschoolers, ages 2 to 5, watch an average of 30 hours of television weekly. That translates into 1,560 hours of television yearly, for a total of 6,240 hours by the time a typical preschooler reaches his 6th birthday. Based on a 14-hour day, this means that preschoolers spend roughly one-third or their waking time looking at the television.
Quite obviously, television (and computers) have become, in and of itself, a primary environment for the majority of our children. The question then becomes, “Are the consequences to a child of watching thousands of hours of television during his formative years healthy or unhealthy?”
For the past 30 years, social scientists have been attempting to answer that question. Their research, however, has focused almost exclusively on the effects of television’s content---
on the social behavior of children. Perhaps because the variables are harder to isolate and
measure, researchers have largely ignored the less-obvious, long-term effects of watching
television as a process, independent of content.
The next time your child watches television, look at him instead of the screen. Ask yourself,
“What is he doing?” Better yet, since chances are he won’t be doing much of anything,
ask yourself, “What is he not doing?” In answer, he is not:
Also, because of television’s insidious “flicker” (every 4 seconds, on the average, the picture changes), television does not promote long-term attention. Lastly, because the action shifts constantly and capriciously backward, forward, and laterally in time (not to mention from subject matter to subject matter), television does not promote logical, sequential thinking.
It would be simplistic to imply that television is solely responsible for the spate of learning problems plaguing our schools, but it would also be naive to ignore the parallels.
Added on 10/27/2010
Filed UnderEducators by Blog
" Great passion and knowledge and examples. Very well balanced presentation."
- Cultivating Creativity Workshop Parent