The Effects of Television on Children – A Summary


Today television has become a very important component of our daily lives, but particularly so in the lives of our children. As we are aware, these days the greater most of families, in many parts of the world, have got (or have access to) this magical screen.

Television is a very powerful and effective modern phenomena which can influence the framing of the future for many generations of children in lots of parts of the world.

Children imitate the action, the spoken word and the personality they may happen to be viewing, therefore , its influence cannot be underestimated, regardless of the circumstances which the child may occur to be in. This influence can be categorised as either ‘good’ or ‘bad’ for the future development of these children.

Mom and dad and guardians have a major role to play in deciding what channel or even program their child can watch, for just how long and what part of the day. All these aspects are important in deciding the shape of the child’s future within any atmosphere.

Positive and Negative Aspects

Recently, the majority of countries had only one or two tv channels, not just that, but the viewing period was limited as well as the transmission by itself was restricted to a number of hours per day/night.

Today, there are a large number of television channels, and some of these channels specialise in kids programs only. Many of these children’s TELEVISION channels broadcast from early hrs of the morning to late night (or even on 24 basis), to the extent that large number of children find it difficult to break the habit of not really missing a number of favourite programs.

One of the negative effects television has on children will be the effect of violence. The hero within a film or television soap safari may use violence for one reason or another, which certainly can be justified in the eyes of the child. That violent action will be considered as normal method of solving a problem(s), and the personality, i. e. the hero, will become the model for any real life situation, in which the child may find himself/herself later on.

On the other hand, educational influences can be great aid for learning and growth, regardless of whether the children are at school or not. This learning process can also be a step forward later on in life when the subject associated with education is tackled more significantly. Not forgetting that the learning process, or education in itself, can be much more attractive to the child when used through tv programs rather than via a text book, even if the main purpose of this program can be pure entertainment or the procedure of the scientific experiment in laboratory.


Another factor which can play an essential part in the development of children which watch television regularly is comparison. Children start to compare the conduct of children and adults on television as well as the behaviour of those around them. They will see two models of behaviour, the behaviour of the characters or the presenter on a television program – usually watched regularly – and the behavior of the parents/guardians and/or relatives who else live with the child. In many cases, but especially so when the child watches TV applications more often, the TV presenter or any TV character shown regularly in many cases will work as a model for the child, rather than the parents/guardians. If this causes confusion in the mind of the child when comparing two different behaviours, then this dilemma can influence the mental/emotional development of the child later on in life.
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The role from the parents obviously is very important, if the kid needs help to sort out any dilemma which may occur. In many cases the child will assimilate the differences in behaviour between model he/she watched on TV, as well as the surrounding environments. Depending on each lawsuit filer’s environment and the strength of the TV influence, a child can develop mentally quicker (or slower) than the average normal mental development.


Commercial marketing also is another factor which can influence children’s understanding of their environment, along with having an influence on their mental and emotional development in different ways.

In many cases, parents/guardians are not concerned about the effect of television adverts on their children, unless the children make demands to buy one or more items seen by them through marketing. Obviously the purpose of the advertiser is to create this kind of demand. If it isn’t going to, then the advert has failed in its’ original purpose. Commercial advertising on television, as we know it, are images without or with sound, which reflect – sometime with great exaggeration – the particular beneficial side of a particular service or product. For a child watching an advert related to a product he/she is thinking about, then the image of that particular product could be the starting point of a daydream of how great it will be to have such a ‘thing’. Occasionally, this daydreaming can lead to frustration plus anger if the product is beyond the particular reach of the child, particularly when other children known or noticed by the above child managed to get it. Consequently, the end result will be manifested within the child’s behaviour immediately, or it may be later on – for a shorter or longer time period.

Having said that, and despite the real effect the television may have on children, the particular claims for the powers of TV should not be exaggerated to the extent of blaming everything the child may do or not do simply on what he watched on TV. These kinds of exaggeration are simply a way of shelving the responsibility of parents/guardians, or family members, towards the kid concerned.


Television can be a source of education and entertainment for the majority of youngsters around the world. At the same time, television can stop children from being mobile and expressing their own vibrant energy (including language aspects) as they play and speak to their natural environment. Television also provides a misguided message about the world in general when interpreted in the mind of the child.

In general, the effect is very real, and in certain circumstances, it can have an unquestionable impact on the mental and emotional development of any child. These effects can express themselves, on short or long term basis, in a positive or negative way. Television, therefore , needs to be used by those who look after children generally for the benefit of those children. This should be done in a balanced and a healthy environment, where supervision by the moms and dads (or the guardians) is an important leading factor for their mental and psychological growth and development.

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