Media vs. Parenting

Published: 2021-06-25
989 words
4 pages
9 min to read
University of Richmond
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The impact and the role of media that media plays towards educating the children have raised significant concern over the years, and mass media can have a positive or negative impact on the kid (Ford-Jones, & Nieman, 2003). The parents are no longer the sole educator of the kids since most of the children are spending a significant amount of time networking or using the media to watch movies, music, or play games. The media has become more pervasive and intrusive, and many parents are wondering how to protect their kids from the mass media (Anderson, & Bushman, 2001). The mass media has taken most of the educative role that parent used to do, and children highly depend on media for their knowledge. This means that parent are only taking a little role in educating their kids and in most cases they take the time to teach their children on what content get from the mass media.

Television seems like the major threat because it brings to so many things to our house that many parents would never choose automatically to get. Parents cannot bring videos or books at home unordered, but television provides offensive and disturbing content that is accessible with a touch of a remote. According to Baehr (2017), different persons are susceptible to different wants, stimuli, desires, and needs. When kids watch televisions, 7% to 11% of the kids want to ape the violence behavior they see, 31% want to copy sexual behavior on the screen, while about 25% want to imitate the alcohol use displayed on the screen. The four stimulation suggest that there are four reactions: some want to watch more, a few want to copy the violence they watch, some are repulsed, and some are desensitized. According to research conducted by Dartmouth Medical School, children who were allowed by their parents to watch R-rated movies either all the times or sometimes were 3% likely to have tasted alcohol than their counterpart who did not view the movies. The link between underage drinking and R-rated movies shows that watching adult content changed the personality of the children. They fail to distinguish between the real world and fiction world made just for entertainment, and this makes them copy such behaviors.

Although the parents are still trying to do what they can to ensure that they continue educating children about the required moral conduct, they are unable to achieve such goals. This is because the influence of media is massive. All form of mass media from television, theaters; iPads to smartphones have become the primary educators of the millennial generation. Where parents used to be the main role models, now the mass media celebrities and stars have emerged as the primary role models. On average American teenagers, spend more than 1500 hours watching television in a year. Also, 72% of daycare centers use televisions to educate the kids on a typical day making them extend this behavior even after growing older. Also, 55% of the children between four and six years prefer watching television than spending time their fathers (Baehr, 2017). The much time spends on the television by the children deny parent a crucial moment that they would otherwise spend educating their kids.

In the past, the parents, as well as the society, were the ones who taught their girls on how to gloom to look beautiful. But right now, girls learn how to don from reality shows on television. More than 67% of the girls feel bad about themselves when watching celebrities and models on television. The models are their role model and keep on donning, dieting, and exercising with a hope of looking beautiful as the images they watch on these shows. The girls have learned that gossiping, fighting, and treating folks badly is perfectly normal and acceptable as they watch the television shows. The shows have deceived girls into believing that a girls value is based on a look, thinking about cheating to get ahead, and most of them spend a significant amount of time on their appearance.

Television can be an excellent teacher as the kids can learn various matters. The toddler can learn valuable lessons like about cooperation, harmony, alphabet, and basic arithmetic via an educational television format. Other television programs stimulate visits to the libraries, museums, bookstores, and other recreational settings. The educational video can also serve as a powerful prosocial teaching device (Ford-Jones, & Nieman, 2003). But at the same time, watching television takes away some time that would have been used for schoolwork and reading.

Mass media is viewed as if it will be the fundamental source of knowledge for the coming generation. Since more than 99% of the entertainment content influences, the behavior of the kid's parents needs to be careful when selecting the kind of the shows they chose for their children. The days when children used to learn after watching their parents are long gone hence children must be exposed to the right mass media because it will highly affect their personality. The more intelligent a kid is, the more he/she is likely to be influenced by the mass media, this is because the more intelligent children are able to encode and visualize what they view on the television and turn into scripts of behavior. Due to their importance in the society, mass media cannot be banned for the welfare of the kids, but there is a need to conduct comprehensive research on how to expose them to positive effects and curtail them from adverse effects of mass media.


Anderson, C. A., & Bushman, B. J. (2001). Effects of violent video games on aggressive behavior, aggressive cognition, aggressive affect, physiological arousal, and prosocial behavior: A meta-analytic review of the scientific literature. Psychological Science, 12, 353-359.

Baehr, T. (2017). The Role of the Mass Media in the Education of Children. Retrieved from

Ford-Jones, A., & Nieman, P. (2017). The impact of media use on children and youth. Pediatrics and Child Health. doi:10.1093/pch/8.5.301

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