Parenting: Profanity on TV
October 25, 2011 (WPVI) -- There's an interesting study in this month's Journal of Pediatrics concerning the controversial question of whether television violence and aggression can affect a child's behavior.
Well the recent findings by researchers at Brigham Young University take a step further: middle aged children who hear swear words on TV or in video games may also act more aggressively toward their peers.
The study looked at 223 kids at one middle school and found that those who were exposed to profanity-laced TV shows or video games tended to use the bad language themselves, and also showed more instances of aggression - i.e. fighting or spreading gossip.
One lead researcher did emphasize though that they only found a correlation and that the study didn't prove that bad language in the media makes for bad children.
The study does point out the need for parents to pay close attention to the language in the programs and games their kids are paying attention to. And perhaps we should be mindful of the language we ourselves use around our children, that could be reinforced on TV.
I myself tend to be a passive television watcher. Usually I'm doing something at the time, so if there is profanity, I probably wouldn't even notice it. But that will now change if my 9-year-old is in the room.
rick williams parenting reports, parenting, rick williams
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