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Media impact on children and teens

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This may not surprise most people: children and teenagers in the U.S. spend more time engaged with various forms of media than any other single activity except sleeping.
A recent study of 2,000 youth aged eight to 18, found that they spend on average seven hours with media each day. The “media” referred to includes TV, movies, video and computer games, the Internet, music lyrics and videos, magazines, books, advertisements and, yes, even the newspaper you hold in your hand.
Cell phones are so pervasive as to be a topic for another article. Across all ages, TV remains the predominant medium of choice and by age 70, these young people will have spent seven to 10 years watching TV. That’s a lot of SpongeBob (and may be more NCIS than even my son could handle.)
TV watching is also becoming more commonplace with younger kids. The latest National Report found that on a typical day, two out of three toddlers and infants under age two watch one-and-a-half hours of TV. As further evidence that we, as a country, have our priorities neatly sorted out, more homes in the U.S. have a television set than indoor plumbing.
Today’s child grows up in an environment with an average of four TV’s, three DVD/VCR players, two CD players, two video game consoles and two computers.


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