I went to pick up my daughter from preschool today only to find out that she punched a little girl. She also kicked the teacher. I sat down with her and asked her why she hurt them. She said, "I didn't hurt them I was using my powers." I wondered where she might be getting the idea that she had powers, and that it didn't hurt anyone when she used those powers. I thought back to the last few nights. The only different thing in her life was the new show Power Puff Girls. It was then I realized that this new cartoon show she had been watching at home just might be the cause.
Children learn behavior through examples. Television is a major influence. One area of concern is the violent content in children's television and their access to other inappropriate programming. The government has the ability to rule and regulate stations both nationally and locally. Exposure to violence on television can affect the way children behave toward their environment. This creates an additional responsibility for parents and teachers to not only protect children from violence but to also teach children to resist violence. Because of the negative influence of violent television programming for children, and their easy access to other violent programs; the government, teachers, and parents need to educate and protect children against violence.
Thanks to technology, we have many more opportunities available to us. This expands the world of education to many who would otherwise not have it. However, this advance of technology has also allowed our children to be exposed to inappropriate programming on television. The violent content is not only on regular programs that children are allowed to view, but it is also a main theme in shows geared to young children, especially in cartoons. I asked Jean Cobb, a Child Care Provider at The Children's Center, "What type of programming has the most violent influence and why?" She said, "Cartoons have always been around but the violence hasn't been brought to our attention until recently. There aren't many cartoons that don't have violence."
Children learn a lot of their behavior through the examples set on television. These behaviors appear while interacting with other children. I have observed children fight, hit, bite, spit and use many mean words to other children. The same behavior is commonplace on children's programming. This can cause problems and conflict. Cobb said, "The children play good guys / bad guys, and can't separate reality from fiction. They play out what they see: kicking, hitting, and punching. But, in reality acting out is violence. There is no-good guy." How do children convert the information on television and use it in play?
"At different ages, children watch and understand television in different ways, depending on the length of their attention span, the way in which they process information, the amount of mental effort they invest, and their own life experiences. These variables must be...