TV Exposure in Early Childhood
A new study revealed that young children who watch too much TV are at risk of developing antisocial behavior later on their teens. Exactly what makes teen children antisocial was not studied, but the researchers found a disturbing correlation.
Aside from children becoming anti-social due to excessive exposure to television, young children have a tendency to adopt violent behaviors toward other students at age 13.
The study comes with an objective to further probe the adverse effects of televiewing in early childhood.
This study was spearheaded by Linda Pagani, a professor at the University of Montreal’s School of Pschoeducation.
The Study and Key Results
Pagani looked for long-term effects of televiewing in toddlers during normal development based on four key indicators of social impairment in children aged 13. She invited parents to report on the televiewing habits of their children at age 2, as well as the self-reported social experiences of these children at age 13.
In addition, parents of the 991 girls and 1,006 boys from the study reported the several hours their children spent watching television at two and half years. At 13 years, the same children rated their relational difficulties associated with victimization, social isolation, intentional and planned aggression by peers, and antisocial behavior.
Here are the interesting results!
The researchers found that children who watched a lot of television growing up were more likely to prefer solitude, experience peer victimization, and adopt aggressive and antisocial behavior toward their peers at the end of the first year of middle school.
In addition, excessive televiewing tends to complicate transition to middle school for young children. Thus, it poses more risks of social impairment.
According to Pagani, too much time in front of the television hinders toddlers to interact with others and to experience creative play as well as other social cognitive experiences. These important social skills such as sharing, appreciation, and respect gained from other are best learned in early childhood.