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In this paper I hope to discuss the ways in which television and the media has negatively played a part in the cognitive development in children.

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The Effects of Television Watching on Children's Cognitive Development In this paper I hope to discuss the ways in which television and the media has negatively played a part in the cognitive development in children. In our society, the media is now a raging force in how we get our information. Television sets are now a fixture in most homes. Because of this, children are more and more being exposed to the media and television entertainment as a whole. This paper seeks to uncover whether or not television has indeed effected the cognitive development in children. It will also explain if these effects have been negative. This paper will also look at the types of media that has most affected the cognitive development in children. This paper will use 3 major sources in order to best explain and describe the effects of television watching on cognitive development. The article, Relations of television viewing and reading, is a longitudinal study that investigates the cognitive changes in reading and learning skills in children over a 4 year period. The study looks at some of the negative aspects of entertainment television watching on children's cognitive development. Another source that will be introduced in this paper is the article, Video comprehensibility and attention in very young children, in which children are tested for their comprehension and attention after television watching. Finally, the article, Media use vs. work and play in middle childhood, discusses the aspects of the media as a whole, and how it impedes on sleep patterns and amount of sleep in children of middle childhood. ...read more.


This guideline by the AAP was set in light of empirical evidence that TV exposure at an early age can negatively impact young children. Though educational programming seems safe for infants and toddlers, very little research has been done to prove this (Pempek, Kirkorian, Richards, Anderson, Lund & Stevens, 2010). In a recent article, researchers conducted a study to test the very effects of early exposure of small children to television. The study wanted to decipher whether or not educational television programs was even at all beneficial to children under a certain age, due to lack of comprehension abilities. Anderson and Pempek (2005) had hypothesized that children learn better in real life situations rather than media experiences (Pempek, Kirkorian, Richards, Anderson, Lund & Stevens, 2010). This may merely mean that infant's comprehensibility to video at that age is non-existent (Pempek, Kirkorian, Richards, Anderson, Lund & Stevens, 2010). These researchers set out to discover whether children of infancy and toddler age are able to comprehend and learn from educational videos. Because they were not able to test the actual comprehensibility of the material watched, they measured comprehensibility to the amount of attention an infant paid to an educational video(Pempek, Kirkorian, Richards, Anderson, Lund & Stevens, 2010). In an earlier study, they found that children at 30 months were more able to pay attention longer to a Sesame Street video than their younger counterparts. This was due to the fact that cognitive development and language are beginning to develop at this age (Pempek, Kirkorian, Richards, Anderson, Lund & Stevens, 2010). ...read more.


Just an additional hour spent on videogames as well as television watching in a week, could limit the amount of outdoor activities by 25 minutes (Hofferth, 2009). Also, just 1hr spent a week on the computer by itself, was enough to lessen sleep by 9 minutes. The displacement hypothesis explains easily why sleep is a particular target for loss of time, because it represents such a seemingly large amount of available time (Hofferth, 2009). Because of this, media takes a chunk out of sleep, which is essential in life. In conclusion, media, though can be beneficial in certain areas, can indeed be harmful to the cognitive development of children. Learning, reading, memory, sleep etc, are all detrimental to the growth and well-being of children. Media such as television watching, videogame playing and computer use to name a few have altered some of the processes necessary for children's cognitive growth. Children's learning and reading abilities can directly be altered by the displacement of reading by television watching. We have also learned that children at a certain age, though parents encourage them to watch, are not yet cognitively ready to comprehend the so-called educational, infant programs on television. It has been noted by the American that children learn much more from real life situations(Pempek, Kirkorian, Richards, Anderson, Lund, & Stevens,2010).The displacement hypothesis was even able to explain how children are missing out on essential sleep and play due to television, video games and computer usage. Studies such as these are essential to helping us understand the importance of declining the media usage by children. It is imperative to their overall growth and cognitive development. ...read more.

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