3 Ağustos 2012 Cuma

Giving Them The Freedom Of Being Exposed To Right One

Thanks to its unstoppable development, technology has been giving people lots of innovations. Media is one of them. It has, however, affected societies mostly so far. No doubt about it. Until media has started to influence societies, it has made people consumers of it. Among these consumers, children have personalities which can be affected quickly. Media can influence their lives negatively or positively, which has raised some questions among parents; what can we do as parents when media are interfering with our children’s lives? and should we prevent them from using media?. The answer is that children should be allowed to use media tools only for educational purposes and also under parental control.
Some people point out that media tools with violent content may bring about some psychological damages during their development. Firstly, the proponents of this approach emphasize that children who are exposed to media violence can begin to behave violently toward others by imitating what they have seen on media tools. In the article named “Television violence affects children, so how can we work to keep our kids safe? Where do we draw the line?”, it is argued that after seeing characters kill and hurt, children may not be able to distinguish between the real life violence and virtual one and also they interpret violence is a way to solve problems (n.d., para. 4). Secondly, they also say that media tools containing violence both cause that kids have more fears about the environment where they live, and cause that children become more suspicious about the people around them, even about their parents. These approaches seem to be somewhat rigid. To begin with, people can make their kids watch educational media programs by taking them under parental control. In this way, children are exposed to the right content which is beneficial for them. Moreover, people can protect them from violent media by simultaneously explaining, for example, what something that children were exposed to is to them, and then by listening to their worries about this situation. DeBenedittis (n.d.) supports this ides by saying that “Cut your viewing in half, and spend that time talking to your children.” and also adding that this suggestion has been given to thousands of parents by the New Mexico Literacy Project, and one year later parents said their relationships with their children have improved (para. 8).
Some people also claim that mass media might disable children to expand their social environment. To begin with, the opinion of proponents of this idea is that mass media give no chance to kids in order to interact with someone. They are just sitting or being put in front of televisions. In this way, parents let them directly be exposed to mass media. Moreover, it could be asserted that letting them to use mass media does not make them gain social skills such as getting along with others, playing and sharing something with others. Even though they insist on this issue, these views are not always the case. Firstly, children are not alone when using mass media, which helps them gain social skills. Huckelba & Corsaro (2004) emphasize that “When with their friends, children would discuss television programs and play games based on certain television shows.” (p. 4). Secondly, feeling some emotions with others at the same time helps their emotional development. That is, media can expose them to lots of different feelings while they are using it, and they feel these feelings together. As a result, they can gain an ability to recognize emotions in others, which is supported with a research indicating that basic emotions such as happiness, sadness, and fear experienced by television characters can be easily identified and differentiated by children (Wilson, 2008, p. 89).
Others state that when used for educational purposes, media tools especially help their cognitive development enhance. In the first place, while kids are being exposed to the right content such as educational programs, their creativity improves. Indeed, not only does it help them broaden their imaginations but it also gives them a chance both to think about events and to look at them from different perspectives. Furthermore, with the help of educational mass media, the pace of thinking and determining in some cases quickly can enhance. Using it, children may gain problem-solving skills. Gaining these skills makes them learn how to overcome problems in their lives by quickly thinking and then determining. Owing to educational media, they can gain and enhance their spatial skills. In this way, they can become more successful in their academic lives. Schmidt & Vandewater (2008) assert that “Students who watched a film depicting the unfolding of a three-dimensional object significantly improved their score on a test requiring identification of unfolded objects.” (p. 66).
All in all, media tools can be considered as machines but they should not be regarded as destroying ones. If these machines are used for producing beneficial results, societies can reach another higher level, which indicates they are becoming more conscious about the electronic world. Becoming more conscious and using media machines for beneficial purposes, people can find lots of benefits which media has given them in their daily lives. In this electronic world, parents can also find something good for their kids. Then, parents can help them gain beneficial things from media, if they do not give their kids freedom of watching whatever they want, and they do not put them in front of media machines and leave them alone while they are being exposed to unknown media content. Last of all, the answer of the question; what can we do as parents? is obvious that parents should let their kids use media tools but they should choose right ones with the most beneficial and educational contents for them, and also they should let them use under their control.


DeBeneditti, P. (n.d.). Parenting to Protect Children from Harmful Media. Retrieved May 2,
            2011, from http://www.medialiteracy.net/pdfs/parent_protect.pdf

Huckelba, A., & Corsaro, W. (2004). Interpretation of the Media in Children’s Peer Culture.
the American Sociological Association, 1-20.

Schmidt,  M., & Vandewater, E. A. (2008). Media and Attention, Cognition, and School
Achievement. Children and Electronic Media, 18 (1), 63-85.

Television violence affects children, so how can we work to keep our kids safe? 
           Where do you draw the line?. Retrieved April 11, 2011, from

Wilson, B. J. (2008). Media and Children’s Aggression, Fear, and Altruism. The Future of
            Children, 18(1), 87-118.

Writer: yazar@yokartikya.com

Hiç yorum yok:

Yorum Gönder