What Children Observe
I'm still fairly young myself, but I've still noticed an enormous change in children's television over time here in the United States. Television used to be the most important source of leisure for many kids but their viewing habits have changed dramatically in recent years. When I was young we basically had five children's television channels to choose from when we got home from school in Haiti. These channels dedicated a few hours of television entirely to children. These days, however, although the French Broadcasting Channel still remains largely the same, if you allow your kids to tune into International television they will probably be treated to one of the many detective shows that they now show in the afternoons such as Inspector Clue so or Midsomer Murders. In a society where children consume nearly two hours of screen media daily (Rideout & Hamel, 2006), the question is not whether children are affected by media but how they are affected by media. Just as media has been implicated for inducing a host of negative behaviors in youngsters (e.g. C. A. Anderson & Bushman, 2001; Brown et al., 2005; Cantor, 2001), media has also been implicated as a successful educational tool across several school readiness domains (D. R. Anderson, Huston, Schmitt, Linebarger, & Wright, 2001; Wright et al., 2001). Regardless of this, however, you could quarrel that children now have more programs to watch because there are entire digital television channels dedicated to showing children's television shows. This is mainly true if you have satellite television because there are lots of children's channels on there that are on pretty much all day long. In my day we had maybe an hour in the early morning if my aunt allowed us to watch television at that time and then a few hours in the afternoon and that was it. The rest of the time we had to find our own pleasure or get on with our homework. Vocabulary knowledge is critical for children’s...
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