Television is a gift of science and has become quite popular among people of all ages. It provides variety entertainment for all tastes. However, excessive watching of TV programmes has an unhealthy effect on children. Should we restrict TV viewing by children?
Arguments for the view (No Never!)
Children generally watch television for a longer time than adults. They remain glued to their seats in front of TV screens even when programmes are of no interest to them. In fact, the programmes meant for children are very few, but the children watch all shows even if they meant for adults.
The scenes of sex crimes and violence in our films have an adverse effect on children. They being to regard violent and immoral actions as a part of life and develop an aggressive outlook. The romantic scenes which are frequently depicted in song and dance sequence take the children to a make-believe world. In such films they are indirectly made to believe that by sheer luck and not thought hard work they can become heroes and heroines.
Those children who are found sitting before TV most of the time lost interest in their books and even fail to do their homework. Parents find it difficult to take children away from TV. It undoubtedly effects their studies. Medical experts have noted that excessive watching of TV, especially from short distances, severely affects children’s eyesight. Many such children have consequently been forced to wear spectacles.
Psychologists have found that children who are very fond of TV and watch it for long hours have reduced ability to endure even minor disappointments. They lose patience; they tend to be indiscipline and pleasure-loving. Moreover, excessive TV watching, experts state, retards the process of intellectual development because TV watching effortless while studying books requires sustained mental excretion.
Some programmes designed for adults depict unreal life-styles; all these tend to promote consumerism. Children who watch such programmes intensely develop a false sense of prosperity in a poor country like India. On growing, these children are disappointed and disillusioned. TV takes countless viewer into a world of fantasy and make-believe.
Conclusion : Television, if not controlled, could do more harm than good to a child.
Arguments against the view (Yes Of course)
Watching TV on the other hand, is more educative and instructive than the class work in some schools where there are so adequate facilities to educate children on systematic lines.
Educational experts say that TV broadens the mental outlook, increase the general awareness and imparts useful information to viewers. Such extensive knowledge, exposure and information is not available to children from any other source. The audiovisual medium of TV has a more durable impact on young, impressionable minds than theoretical teaching in schools.
Recently, well-prepared educational programmes are being televised. Even lessons in various subjects, such as Science and Mathematics, are effectively projected. These have proved very useful; they are very much like revision of difficult topics in a form which appeals to pupils. Several experiments shown on TV demonstrate scientific principles better than the ones conducted in school laboratories.
Most parents have neither the time nor inclination to teach their children at home. TV is a convenient home-teacher, which combines entertainment with instruction. News- bulletins, quiz programmes, educational film, sports coverage and cartoon strips make a deep, healthier impact on children’s minds than cheap commercially motivated comics and other booklets sold in the market. Listening to TV broadcasts also improves the accent and pronunciation of students.
TV watching brings families, elders and youngsters together at least for some time. In the modern age of individualistic existence and the wide generation gap, such common gatherings help to maintain and promote family bonds.
Conclusion : Television is truly a gift of modern science to the child. Let him have it.