Television Can Negatively Affect a Child's Cognitive Abilities

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Is Cartoon Television Affecting Your Children?
In discussion with children and watching cartoons today, people seem to wonder what type of shows their children are watching can affect intellect. This paper will not be focusing on how children tend to imitate cartoon shows, but how fast paced cartoon shows can cause a toll in children and their schoolwork. Consequently, parents who do not choose to filter what their children are watching, and now use television as a form of a babysitting are actually hurting a child’s brain development. I will be examining how the cartoon show SpongeBob SquarePants, negatively affects children’s ability to perform executive functions. Studies show that children who watch SpongeBob SquarePants have slower levels in memory, which can affect their cognitive ability as opposed to children who watch educational TV shows like PBS’ kids, Caillou. The issue here is that shows like SpongeBob SquarePants are much too fast paced and fantastical for children to obtain executive functioning skills from watching. Parents need to know that many shows like SpongeBob are negatively affecting their kids! They have to understand the importance of filtering what their kids watch from educational to the nonsense. If parents assist their children in making healthy brain choices they will positively affect their children’s executive functions. To start with, children who tend to watch fast-paced cartoon shows are prone to have slower cognitive functions (Lillard and Peterson). When children watch cartoons like SpongeBob SquarePants, they are causing themselves to be susceptible to learning and cognition difficulties. Studies have shown that parents are not involved in what their children watch on TV. The majority of parents believe cartoons are harmless (Boyse). This goes with the notion that, SpongeBob SquarePants is believed to be harmless by most parents. Fast-paced fantastical shows have been tested on children’s ability to perform executive functions. The research explains that children, who watch SpongeBob SquarePants, seem to have slower cognitive levels in memory function versus children who watch Caillou on PBS kids (Lilliard and Peterson). There seems to be minimal violence in the shows, but the sparks of fantastical events are detrimental to a child’s mental power. This is a problem because it is their parents fault for not monitoring what their kids are watching. According to a study done by the University of Virginia’s Department of Psychology, children who chose to watch the fast-paced show SpongeBob SquarePants were more likely to perform badly on tests as opposed to the latter children who chose to watch Caillou. This study was named, “The Immediate Impact of Different Types of Television on Young Children’s Executive Function.” The study recruited a group of sixty children all approximately four-year olds. The concept of executive functioning is a theory invented by Psychologists and Neuroscientists to describe certain brain functions. These functions consist of being able to pay attention, plan, organize, and remember details (Lillard and Peterson). Executive functioning is completely necessary for a child to grow and live a healthy habitual life. The reason as to why I chose this study was because it shows a clear depiction of what happens to a child’s cognitive ability after watching just nine minutes of television. The interesting part of the study comes into action when the children are given two choices of cartoons to watch. The first choice was SpongeBob SquarePants, a fast-paced fantasy television show about a sponge who lives in a pineapple under the sea. The second choice was Caillou, a slow-paced educational show that focused on the realty of a preschool boy. The fast-paced cartoon changed scenes every 11 seconds throughout the show, and the slow-paced cartoon changed scenes every 34 seconds throughout the show (Lillard and Peterson). A fast-pace show...
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