Thursday, May 21, 2015

Are cartoons good for the children?



Few days back one article caught my eyes and attention…compelled me to think, are cartoons good for the kids?

In that article, the author opined that most of the programs on different channels are actually not good for the children, except few programs in Discovery Kids. For example, most of the popular programs have negative effect, like Chota Bheem encourages to eat unhealthy Ladoos, Motu Patlu promotes to eat Samosa, Doremon shows how to cheat parents and teachers, Horrid Henry demonstrate dirty tricks etc.

I think everything has positive and negative side; all these programs confer different take aways in different ratios. If I compare the same with Facebook and Whatsapp in short, both have merits like bringing long lost friends together, share your happiness and sorrow quickly with your well-wishers etc., at the same time, negative effect too like, sometimes consume lots of your time, update your foe very easily, make you unanswerable to your boss why you have not completed your task on time etc.
   
Here is my experience with my four years old son…..

Pocoyo was the first favorite cartoon for my child, since around 1.5 years till 2.5 years. At 2.5 years, Tom and Jerry got the preference. At 3, Oggy and Doremon and at 4, he is now fond of Chota Bheem, Dora : The explorer, Blue Clues, Mister Maker, and Rescue Bots…….and I am sure, at his 5, he will be a Ben 10. A quick transition of his likings towards cartoons!!!




Pocoyo : an award winning, truly educative Spanish cartoon which is available in English too, but is not popular in India. Experts say that the children, who are watching cartoons of Pocoyo, will be educated in values, at the same time, they enjoy many hours of entertainment and fun to learn. My child used to watch these programs in Youtube, enjoy a lot. But, he hardly used to talk till his 2.5 yrs. though he used to pronounce just few words. So, should I blame Pocoyo for my child not talking? I don't think so....Stephen Fry's clear voice, commentaries instead could have helped him pick up the words easily.

Tom and Jerry :  Nothing to learn as such…..but just enjoy the movements and actions….chasing…..No talk in the Cartoon, so as my son. People started giving advices to take to a speech therapist….spend more time with him, talk in one language at home etc. Accordingly, we took him to a speech therapist for one day….But because of some time constraint, we could not take him to the therapist any more, but we observed a bit improvement in his vocabulary gradually at home without any therapy.

So at 3, when Oggy and Doremon started getting huge points for their TRP from my home, I could see some continuous improvement in my child's words' kitty too.

Then came my parents to stay with us for few months, and by that time, his interest went to Chota Bheem, Dora : The explorer, Blue Clues, Mister Maker, and Rescue Bots….My parents encouraged him to watch those program with full volume so that he can catch each word…….And he picked up….Yes!!! It’s kind of miracle….He started framing the sentences in Hindi (though not his father or mother tongue)…..I agree that my parents’ contribution is there, but now I cannot deny the fact that the Cartoons help the children to grow and develop.

I understand that many parents are obstinate about keeping their children away from television referring as an idiot box, may be in the fear of their children getting influenced by the cartoon characters in a negative way, or becoming couch potatoes looking at Chota bheem eating Ladoos or Motu grabbing Samosas. In fact, child experts claim that cartoons can reduce the imagination powers and instead they should be engaged in productive activities like reading, jigsaw puzzles, arts and crafts, and playing outside. We all know that later activities are always good, but is keeping kids away from the TV completely possible?

Ofcourse, there are many solutions in infringing the battle between kids and parents when it comes to watching cartoon. For example, limiting the time period to watch the television can be one option. Some say two hours a day is the maximum for children under 6. Secondly, parents should accompany the kid to watch the shows and take on a more participative role to what’s happening on the screen. That way, the child is interacting while watching and notably, learning some things from the parents too.

Lastly, parents should properly regulate the shows that the child is watching. Just because it’s a show on a kid channel doesn’t mean it represents the right values to the kids. I totally agree that some cartoons are detrimental to the child’s soft brain due to violence or disobedience to elders and such other issues.

So, I would say, "Cartoons are not bad for kids under the proper regulation of parents."



Post a Comment
Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...