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In children's lives today television has become an important part of their lives. Recent studies have shown that children in the United States spend more time watching television than they do any other physical activity. Today the average child watches television a little more than four hours a day (Using TV Sensibly).

In children's lives today television has become an important part of their lives. Recent studies have shown that children in the United States spend more time watching television than they do any other physical activity. Today the average child watches television a little more than four hours a day (Using TV Sensibly).

Americans spend approximately 20 million years of their human life watching television! By the time young children graduate from high school they will have spent 1,100 hours in school but over 15,000 hours watching television (Using TV Sensibly).

Parents' education and occupational status were strong negative predictors of the amount of time children spent watching television. Children watched more television that were from less-educated homes than those with better educated parents. Some people recommend that parents watch television with their children. So, it has been seen as well that family time has been structured in time around television viewing routines (Bryant 240). There is enough evidence to show that parents can contribute to their child's learning and can clarify values for them before and after co-viewing television together, but it is rare for them to do so (Bryant 241).

Based on a study published by the Broadcasters Audience Research Board, the number of hours of television watched by twelve year olds varies from 2.5. to 3.2 hours per day from the years 1982 to 1987(this increase of television viewing maybe due to the increase of breakfast programs and daytime television). This study also found that there was an apparent difference in the television viewing time between girls and boys. Over 70 percent of the boys interviewed watched three hours and over, while only 45 percent of girls do the same. While interviewing older children the study found that programs that were initially aimed at children disappeared after the age of thirteen to be replaced by more adult programs(Children's Television Viewing Habits).

In another study researchers found observed three to five year olds with their parents watching TV and then in a "family playtime" when the TV was off? When viewing the TV, children seemed to talk less, were less active and were less oriented towards their parents. But, the study also shows that there was more touching between parents and children while they watched television than during the child's playtime. Therefore, it was found that children interacted less with their parents during television viewing that in times just playing (Bryant 240).

These researchers also did another study with 11-year-olds. The research showed that watching television stimulated interaction with parents. The same researchers studied 15-year-olds, and they found that the opportunity that the 15-year-old had to be with their parents was more important than television viewing (Bryant 242).


So what are the effects of all this time spent watching television?

Well, recent studies have shown between children who are light television viewers and heavy television viewers. TV heavy viewers put less effort into their school work and do not participate in other physical activities (Using TV Sensibly). Heavy viewers also tend to be obese and are less engaged to participate in other activities.

So what can parents do?
Parents need to limit viewing television times.
Promote children to watch educational programs.
Know what your child is watching.
Watch television with your children.


So what are the Pro's and Con's of television?

 

Pro's/ Con's

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