February 18th, 2013
03:56 PM ET

TV may improve behavior in kids

For years, pediatricians have recommended that young children watch no TV, or as little as possible, because it can lead to problems in school and behavior issues.  Now a new study concedes children are sitting in front of the TV a lot longer.  However, controlling what they watch can improve how they behave.

When preschoolers watch educational programs instead of violent TV shows, they tend to be more compassionate and less aggressive, according to a study published Monday in the journal Pediatrics.

The study

About 600 families were recruited and assigned to one of two groups. Parents in the first group were encouraged to substitute violent shows with educational and pro-social ones - shows that stressed compassion and cooperation.

Families were given monthly TV guides listing educational programming for their area: shows such as "Dora the Explorer," "Super WHY," "Sesame Street" and "It's a Big, Big World." Parents were also encouraged to watch TV with their kids.

The children went from watching a half-hour of violent programming a day to 23 minutes. Parents then increased educational viewing from about 30 to 43 minutes a day.

Families in the second group did not change their viewing habits.

"This is the first study to try to modify the viewing habits of preschool kids," says Dr. Vic Strasburger, spokesperson for the American Academy of Pediatrics. "That's one of the significances of this study."

The results

After a year, researchers found that children watching less violent and more child-appropriate shows scored better on tests that measured cooperation, a willingness to share or compromise. They also had fewer incidents of aggressive behavior such as yelling and hitting.

"Although television is frequently implicated as a cause of many problems in children, our research indicates that it may also be part of the solution," the study notes.

The scientists saw the greatest improvements in boys raised in disadvantaged homes where children tends to watch more TV.

Experts know that children mimic what they see, whether it's in real life or what's on the screen. And this is of particular concern when children watch TV or movies riddled with violence.

"Children learn their attitudes about violence at a very young age, before age 8 and once they learn those attitudes it's very difficult to unlearn them," says Strasburger.

"It doesn't mean that children who watch violence are going to become murderers, but it does mean that they are desensitized to violence in the real world and they are more likely to be aggressive themselves," says study author Dr. Dimitri Christakis, director of the Center for Child Health, Behavior, and Development at Seattle Children's Research Institute.

Better shows, better kids

But on the flip side, when children watch shows with positive social messages, it helps them get along better with others and gives them the tools to become better communicators, the study suggests.

"They will imitate the good things too," says Christakis. "We should take more advantage of the fact that you can demonstrate good behaviors on-screen and that children will emulate them in real life."

Right now, the American Academy of Pediatrics recommends that preschoolers and older children get only one to two  hours of TV or screen time a day.  But in reality, they're really watching much more.  According to this study, preschoolers see an average of about four and a half hours daily at home and in daycare settings.  Parents struggle with guilt, researchers say, because they allow so much TV time.

"Parents need to get this message that it's not just about how much TV your children watch, it's about what they watch," says Christakis. "It's not just about turning off the set; it's about changing the channel."

soundoff (610 Responses)
  1. Maserati Life


    May 15, 2021 at 10:13 | Report abuse | Reply
  2. Internet Marketing Agencies Near Me


    May 15, 2021 at 17:14 | Report abuse | Reply
  3. Content Marketing Orange County

    Good day! I simply want to give you a huge thumbs up for your excellent information you've got here on this post. I'll be returning to your website for more soon.


    May 16, 2021 at 02:48 | Report abuse | Reply
  4. Video Marketing Quotes


    May 16, 2021 at 05:23 | Report abuse | Reply
  5. Local Marketing Companies Near Me


    May 16, 2021 at 09:38 | Report abuse | Reply
  6. paint a horse trailer

    I was very happy to discover this web site. I need to to thank you for your time due to this wonderful read!! I definitely enjoyed every bit of it and i also have you book-marked to look at new stuff on your website.


    May 16, 2021 at 10:11 | Report abuse | Reply
  7. rv mattresses near me

    I couldn’t resist commenting. Perfectly written!


    May 16, 2021 at 10:24 | Report abuse | Reply
  8. Sprinter Van Conversion Computer Repair


    May 16, 2021 at 11:40 | Report abuse | Reply
  9. Maserati Boob

    Excellent article. I will be dealing with a few of these issues as well..


    May 16, 2021 at 14:09 | Report abuse | Reply
  10. Sprinter Van Front Wiper Rust Repair


    May 16, 2021 at 15:17 | Report abuse | Reply
  11. Hot Wheels Maserati

    This blog was... how do you say it? Relevant!! Finally I've found something which helped me. Thanks!


    May 16, 2021 at 17:16 | Report abuse | Reply
  12. Blue Maserati


    May 16, 2021 at 18:49 | Report abuse | Reply
  13. Sprinter Van Repair Los Angeles


    May 16, 2021 at 23:00 | Report abuse | Reply
  14. Start Error Mercedes Sprinter Repair


    May 16, 2021 at 23:18 | Report abuse | Reply
  15. Best Tucker Sprinter Repair

    This is a topic that is near to my heart... Cheers! Exactly where are your contact details though?


    May 16, 2021 at 23:23 | Report abuse | Reply
  16. 2003 Sprinter Ac Repair

    I needed to thank you for this excellent read!! I absolutely enjoyed every bit of it. I've got you saved as a favorite to check out new things you post…


    May 17, 2021 at 01:44 | Report abuse | Reply
  17. Repair Van

    Greetings, There's no doubt that your web site could be having internet browser compatibility problems. Whenever I take a look at your web site in Safari, it looks fine however, if opening in Internet Explorer, it's got some overlapping issues. I merely wanted to provide you with a quick heads up! Apart from that, great blog!


    May 17, 2021 at 02:51 | Report abuse | Reply
  18. Sprinter Van Repair Shops Near Me


    May 17, 2021 at 07:50 | Report abuse | Reply
  19. Maserati Levante Gts

    Good post. I absolutely love this site. Continue the good work!


    May 17, 2021 at 08:04 | Report abuse | Reply
  20. Sprinter Van Front Wiper Rust Repair

    This web site certainly has all the information and facts I needed about this subject and didn’t know who to ask.


    May 17, 2021 at 09:57 | Report abuse | Reply
  21. Sprinter Rust Repair Panels

    Everyone loves it whenever people come together and share views. Great blog, stick with it!


    May 17, 2021 at 11:11 | Report abuse | Reply
  22. Maserati Logos


    May 17, 2021 at 11:54 | Report abuse | Reply
  23. RV Headlights Los Angeles

    Pretty! This was an extremely wonderful post. Thanks for providing this info.


    May 17, 2021 at 15:23 | Report abuse | Reply
  24. RV Headlights Near Me

    Hi, I do believe this is an excellent website. I stumbledupon it 😉 I'm going to revisit yet again since I book marked it. Money and freedom is the best way to change, may you be rich and continue to help others.


    May 17, 2021 at 18:14 | Report abuse | Reply
  25. Eustolia Buse

    Your style is so unique in comparison to other folks I have read stuff from. Many thanks for posting when you have the opportunity, Guess I'll just bookmark this page.


    May 18, 2021 at 14:16 | Report abuse | Reply
  26. Maserati Means


    May 18, 2021 at 15:00 | Report abuse | Reply
  27. Best Dentist Offices

    An impressive share! I have just forwarded this onto a friend who was doing a little homework on this. And he in fact bought me lunch simply because I discovered it for him... lol. So let me reword this.... Thank YOU for the meal!! But yeah, thanx for spending some time to discuss this topic here on your web page.


    May 18, 2021 at 15:16 | Report abuse | Reply
  28. in home catering services


    May 18, 2021 at 15:33 | Report abuse | Reply
  29. how to start a food truck business in pennsylvania

    Everything is very open with a clear explanation of the challenges. It was definitely informative. Your website is very helpful. Thanks for sharing!


    May 18, 2021 at 16:30 | Report abuse | Reply
  30. Flat Roofing Contractors Near Me

    Your style is really unique compared to other people I've read stuff from. Thank you for posting when you've got the opportunity, Guess I will just book mark this page.


    May 18, 2021 at 22:42 | Report abuse | Reply
  31. Optometrist Nearby

    I’m amazed, I must say. Seldom do I come across a blog that’s both equally educative and entertaining, and let me tell you, you have hit the nail on the head. The problem is something not enough men and women are speaking intelligently about. I am very happy I found this in my search for something regarding this.


    May 19, 2021 at 01:10 | Report abuse | Reply
  32. 2005 Maserati

    I'm pretty pleased to uncover this website. I wanted to thank you for ones time just for this fantastic read!! I definitely savored every part of it and I have you saved as a favorite to see new information on your site.


    May 19, 2021 at 01:26 | Report abuse | Reply
  33. Vision Eyeglasses Near Me


    May 19, 2021 at 03:34 | Report abuse | Reply
  34. Used Maserati Ghibli For Sale Near Me

    Howdy! I could have sworn I’ve been to your blog before but after browsing through many of the posts I realized it’s new to me. Anyways, I’m definitely delighted I came across it and I’ll be bookmarking it and checking back frequently!


    May 19, 2021 at 03:56 | Report abuse | Reply
  35. Same Day Lenses Near Me


    May 19, 2021 at 06:54 | Report abuse | Reply
  36. Metal Roof Installers Near Me


    May 19, 2021 at 08:56 | Report abuse | Reply
  37. Maserati Watch

    Hi! I could have sworn I’ve been to your blog before but after going through some of the articles I realized it’s new to me. Regardless, I’m certainly delighted I found it and I’ll be book-marking it and checking back frequently!


    May 19, 2021 at 09:24 | Report abuse | Reply
  38. Pool Store Near Me


    May 19, 2021 at 11:08 | Report abuse | Reply
  39. Jacuzzi Maintenance Near Me

    Next time I read a blog, I hope that it doesn't disappoint me just as much as this one. I mean, Yes, it was my choice to read, but I actually thought you would probably have something interesting to talk about. All I hear is a bunch of whining about something you can fix if you weren't too busy searching for attention.


    May 19, 2021 at 12:21 | Report abuse | Reply
  40. rv rentals orange county ca

    Spot on with this write-up, I seriously feel this web site needs far more attention. I’ll probably be back again to see more, thanks for the advice!


    May 19, 2021 at 13:53 | Report abuse | Reply
  41. Sprinter Seat Belt Buckle Repair

    You're so interesting! I do not think I've truly read anything like that before. So nice to find somebody with some genuine thoughts on this subject matter. Really.. many thanks for starting this up. This site is one thing that's needed on the internet, someone with some originality!


    May 19, 2021 at 13:54 | Report abuse | Reply
  42. appliance store orange county ca

    I'd like to thank you for the efforts you've put in writing this blog. I am hoping to see the same high-grade blog posts from you later on as well. In truth, your creative writing abilities has motivated me to get my own, personal website now 😉


    May 19, 2021 at 15:05 | Report abuse | Reply
  43. RV Supplies Near Me

    You've made some good points there. I checked on the web for additional information about the issue and found most people will go along with your views on this web site.


    May 19, 2021 at 15:57 | Report abuse | Reply
  44. best rv upgrades


    May 19, 2021 at 18:35 | Report abuse | Reply
  45. RV Body Shop Riverside

    When I initially left a comment I appear to have clicked on the -Notify me when new comments are added- checkbox and from now on whenever a comment is added I get four emails with the exact same comment. There has to be a way you are able to remove me from that service? Cheers!


    May 20, 2021 at 00:36 | Report abuse | Reply
  46. Social Media Marketing Consultants


    May 20, 2021 at 02:33 | Report abuse | Reply
  47. Video Marketing Business

    Aw, this was an incredibly nice post. Taking the time and actual effort to generate a really good article… but what can I say… I hesitate a whole lot and don't manage to get anything done.


    May 20, 2021 at 03:37 | Report abuse | Reply
  48. Social Media Marketing Company Near Me

    Oh my goodness! Incredible article dude! Thanks, However I am encountering problems with your RSS. I don’t know the reason why I can't join it. Is there anybody else getting similar RSS problems? Anybody who knows the answer can you kindly respond? Thanks!!


    May 20, 2021 at 11:41 | Report abuse | Reply
  49. motor home repair parts


    May 20, 2021 at 15:23 | Report abuse | Reply
  50. chauffeur prive

    Pretty nice post. I simply stumbled upon your blog
    and wanted to mention that I've truly loved surfing around
    your blog posts. In any case I'll be subscribing in your feed and I am
    hoping you write again very soon!

    Here is my web site ... chauffeur prive

    May 20, 2021 at 16:12 | Report abuse | Reply
1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13

Leave a Reply to rv slide out water damage repair


CNN welcomes a lively and courteous discussion as long as you follow the Rules of Conduct set forth in our Terms of Service. Comments are not pre-screened before they post. You agree that anything you post may be used, along with your name and profile picture, in accordance with our Privacy Policy and the license you have granted pursuant to our Terms of Service.

About this blog

Get a behind-the-scenes look at the latest stories from CNN Chief Medical Correspondent, Dr. Sanjay Gupta, Senior Medical Correspondent Elizabeth Cohen and the CNN Medical Unit producers. They'll share news and views on health and medical trends - info that will help you take better care of yourself and the people you love.