Saturday, June 28, 2008

The Negative Effects of Cartoon Violence on Children's Behavior

Child is like a white paper, which you can draw on it his personality and behavior. A child is accepting any outer influence and information affecting his character in the future. Since any behavior or action the child sees may affect his personality, grownups must be carful with what the children watch, especially on television. Television is what attracts the children most, and shapes their behaviors. Usually most of the shows that children from the age 6 months till 3 years watch are cartoons, and that is why parents should be totally aware of the type of the cartoons their children are watching. Unfortunately, some of the cartoon movies and episodes have violent figures, but parents do not always look for the violent cartoons as bad thing. In fact, violent cartoons have a huge negative effect on the children’s personalities and behaviors, and in some cases they put the children’s lives in to risk. (bloody cartoon Video)

Violent cartoons affect children’s behavior negatively, as the children watch the cartoons on the television and they see material that is not appropriate for their age. The Children who watch violent cartoons on television are more likely to have mental and emotional problems, and unexpectedly the risk of a physical problem increases. In year 2000, a report on teenager violence, the U.S. Surgeon General David Satcher stated that children behave more aggressively, because they frequently watch cartoons that contain violence in it. Research states that children spend thirteen thousand hours (13000) at school from the time they start going to it till they graduate, and they spend nearly eighteen thousand hours (18000) watching television from the time they start school till they graduate. Comparing the two numbers of hours shows how the children spend a lot of time watching television, which make the parents must pay more attention for what their children watching, so that it do not negatively affect the children’s emotions and their sense to feel pain. (stewie beats brain Video)

There are four major effects have been proven by psychological research caused by children seeing violence on television are that the child may become less sensitive to the pain and suffering of others; children who watch violence do not fear violence nor are they bothered by violence in general, they may become more fearful of the world around them; and they may be more likely to behave in aggressive or harmful ways toward others (National Institute of Mental Health, 1982; Singer & Singer, 1984, 1986; Singer, Singer, & Rapaczynski, 1984; Rule & Ferguson, 1986; Simon, 1989). Watching violent cartoons regularly leads the children to consider violence as a normal response to stress and anger. (stewie beats brain 2 Video)

Children have imaginative play, which is very important for their characters’ development. Unfortunately, research proves that watching violent cartoons decrease the imaginative play for the children, and increase the imitative play in which the child imitates the violent and aggressive actions observed in cartoons. In their play, children imitate those characters reinforced for their aggressive behavior and rehearse the characters' scripts without creative or reflective thought. Children who repeatedly observe violent or aggressive problem-solving behavior in the media tend to rehearse what they see in their play and imitate those behaviors in real-life encounters (Huesmann, 1986; Rule & Ferguson, 1986; Eron & Huesmann, 1987).

Some parents do not always consider violent cartoons are harmful for their children, since these cartoons do not contain sex violation. Today in many children’s cartoon’s you see cartoon characters jumping, diving, and falling from very high heights, then landing without being harmed. These cartoons’ actions cause false sense of reality for the children at a young age, which make them can’t tell the difference between cartoons and real life. It has been proven that because of this false sense of reality for every hour of TV viewed per day, the risk of injury rise by about 34% in the children, which is a threatening percentage when talking about children’s injuries, so just because the cartoons your children are watching do not promote sex does not mean that they are innocent. The American Academy of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry (AACAP) states, “Children who view shows in which violence is very realistic, frequently repeated or unpunished, are more likely to imitate what they see”, so people who do not consider jumping from a mountain and falling down without being hurt is not a violent cartoons must reconsider their thoughts.

There are some ways to protect our children from violent cartoons’ harm. The FCC has to show non-violent cartoons during the hours children are likely to watch television. The FCC also has to mention on the television screen for the parents before running any violent cartoon, that this cartoon will include violent figures. They can develop a printed parental guidance rating system for the cartoons and their time, similar to that established for movies, so that parents can control when their children will watch television. There is also a very big duty on the teachers, as they have to assist children in developing their skills in a nonviolent way, and to develop the children’s creativity and imaginative play. Teachers have to tell the children’s parents whenever the children appear in their playing negative or violent themes. Definitely, parents have the major responsibility to keep their children away from violent cartoons. The parents’ duty is to make their children watch cartoons that entertain and educate them, without being violent. Parents must watch the cartoons with their children, and evaluate these cartoons together. Talking with the children about the cartoons they watched is very significant, because parents then will be able to know if these cartoons effect their children positively or not. In addition, parents can use videotapes of high quality children's programming and public television, so that they make sure that the cartoons do not have any violent figures by any mean.


1 comment:

Jorge said...

Hola amigo: quería invitarte que visites el blog que estoy realizando con mis alumnos de segundo año de la secundaria sobre LA DISCRIMINACIÓN.
Tema arduo e interesante.
Seguro será de tu agrado.
Tu aporte será valioso
Un abrazo desde la Argentina.