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Effects on children who do not have a TV?

I have 3 daughters who are 7, 5 and 3 years old. I didn't allow them to watch TV until a year ago when I was persuaded to babysit a large plasma TV while the owner left the country for a few years. Then it didn't take much to hook up. I watched it for maybe an hour over 6 months total to remind myself why I got rid of my own TV in the first place.

However, during these months my daughters deteriorated. Without television it was possible to hire them - the two older ones were interesting to talk to. The 7 year old pestered me for math problems subtracting, adding and multiplying and actually kept a journal since she was 6 years old. The 5-year-old knew the ABC and counted to 100 and tried to write phrases.

That was before. After 6 months they became much more confrontational and rude - behaviors learned from children's shows that find it critical that children never question that their parents are stupid, useless and an object of ridicule that is on the "storylines" based on the cartoon.

They began to imitate the cartoon characters who taught them that learning is overrated, that cool people speak broken slang, that there is no morality to govern one's behavior, but - “I want it and I want it now and I do don't care about anything or anyone else '. On the 6 month anniversary of being plugged in, my 7 year old told me that reading is stupid and a waste of time. That night the plasma had an unfortunate accident (sorry Mark).

The first three weeks off TV was like one of those shows where crackheads or dope fiends go through withdrawals in rehab. My girls didn't know what to do with themselves. Atmospheric, tears, threats, tantrums from the eldest. Now they have partially recovered, but the damage has been done.

Books are shunned as something stupid now, 6 months later, and there are frequent reminder sessions with the girls sitting and talking about how great a TV is and how wonderful the programs are, showing you everything rather than pictures in your head having to do and read things.

---- Note: too late for me

Television is what they indoctrinate you to shape you into a happy little bot unable to think independently and always hand in hand with popular culture and everything that clique supports and disapproves of this week.

If you want to grow vegetables that are programmed to look down on you, agenda-driven television is the way to go. My advice - throw it out. There is a lot of stuff on Youtube and other sites.


Study-1

A 2010 study by the University of London Institute of Education [ The Consequences of Early Childhood Disadvantage in Northern Ireland and the UK at Age 7 ], which used test results for 11,000 seven-year-olds recorded since birth (part of the Millennium Cohort Study).

Ref: http://www.ofmdfmni.gov.uk/the_consequences_at_age_7_of_early_childhood_disadvantage.pdf

"... watching less than three hours of television per day (is) positively associated with the teachers' assessment." (P.19)

"... less than three hours of television per day in preschool are all associated with a positive course of teacher evaluation between the ages of 5 and 7" (p.20).

"Moderate television (between one and three hours a day) is associated with lower (social and behavioral) levels of difficulty compared to high television levels (over three hours) ..." (p.22)

(P.46) / (p.49) of the study are particularly interesting for the coefficient lists for different conditions affecting children of different races / neighborhoods / conditions at home / parenting styles. etc .. (including hours of television).

There's a lot of good data to look at here, but the data on pp. 46/49 makes it clear that the less TV, the better.

Study-2

A 2013 study by the same team as Study 1 using the same Millennium Cohort sample - [ Social class and inequalities in early cognitive scores ] - published in the Journal of Sociology

Ref:

http://eprints.ioe.ac.uk/11611/ (docx download)

https://www.psychologytoday.com/blog/in-the-neighborhood/201306/is-television-the-key-academic-success (summary)

The study concluded that children of mothers with less education who watched TV 3 hours a day were three months ahead of their peers (including those with mothers with less education) who watched TV for less than an hour a day. Children of less educated mothers benefit from television on average. For children with educated parents in stable homes, there is harm - physical health, mental health, progress, etc.

GentlePurpleRain

@Schism Fair enough. I deleted my comment.

CodeAngry

This answer needs more upvotes.

anongoodnurse ♦

@GentlePurpleRain - Thank you very much for your comment. It should be visible not only to this answer, but to the others as well. Anecdote has its place, but it provides a less valuable answer. Plus, it was kind and considerate. Please reconsider the publication.

anongoodnurse ♦

@Schism - The fact that the best chosen answer is just an opinion mask as the fact doesn't really affect that answer. The entire website would be for all Users would be better off if posters tried to back up their answers with serious research.

NickNo

@anongoodnurse I've edited my answer and added an ongoing study with a large enough sample. Thanks for keeping me honest. :) :)