I am sure so many harried parents have time and again thought ways to deter their toddlers from watching TV. These days there is a flood of TV channels, but how many are right for viewing by children. Well, we can count that on our fingertips.
Now, adding parents is a scientific that can help them justify barring children from watching TV. Other than helping them for educational purposes, it harms the cognitive development.
AdvertisementA study by Dr. Frederick Zimmerman and Dr. Dimitri Christakis, of the University of Washington Child Health Institute in the School of Public Health and Community Medicine, suggests, however, that television for very young children is not helpful for cognitive development and may in fact be harmful.
Zimmerman and Christakis say:
"The American Academy of Pediatrics has issued guidelines urging parents to avoid any television or video viewing before age 2 years. It has previously been shown that parents are not able to follow this guideline, and we would argue that the guideline may need greater publicity. This analysis complements this earlier work by suggesting that viewing a heavy television diet entails modest, but statistically significant, consequences for subsequent development in several key cognitive domains. This analysis further suggests that parents may appreciate and benefit from better guidance on the kinds of high-quality content that is available on television and on ways of managing the context of television viewing to maximize its potential benefit for their children."
It has been known for a long time that high-quality educational television, such as Sesame Street or Blue's Clues, can provide educational benefits for some children. This study shows, for the first time that these beneficial effects can be and usually are offset by the ill-effects of viewing non-educational fare. In fact, the typical American child under 5 watches a combination of good and bad television that results in a net adverse effect. For those who watch more than 3 hours of television per day before age 3, the negative impact is similar to the adverse effect of large differences in maternal IQ or education. Zimmerman's previous research showed that television viewing by young children can make them more likely to exhibit bullying behavior.
So if right TV habits are inculcated in children as soon as possible, the better it will be.