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IceAlisa
08-12-2011, 12:41 AM
I actually thought AG presented a good case for kids watching TV.

She did? I thought it was Tinami who made an excellent case, actually.

I didn't think this was an issue of right or wrong. I read your post as your own perspective, not necessarily informed by research but still valuable, at least to me. That's what I meant in my response to milanessa.

Japanfan
08-12-2011, 01:36 AM
She did? I thought it was Tinami who made an excellent case, actually.


I thought they both made good points.



With tv, we either all watched together, or at least the tv was loud enough so that you could follow it while doing other things. So we could discuss what he was watching and have that branch to other things. That rarely happens with the books he reads. Third, his vocab hasn't improved the way I anticipated. If he heard a word he didn't understand on tv or in a video game, he would come ask about it. But he just skips over it in a book. What's worse, he has no clue how to pronounce these new words, so he can't really incorporate them into his conversations.


She is highlighting the social aspect of TV and its capacity to stimulate conversation about different topics. I agree that this is one of the positives of TV.


I didn't think this was an issue of right or wrong. I read your post as your own perspective, not necessarily informed by research but still valuable, at least to me. That's what I meant in my response to milanessa.

Yes and I certainly admit to my bias. I am not a very social TV watcher - we didn't have TV in the Northern Canadian town I grew up in until I was 5 years old and then only one channel (CBC) for the rest of the years I spent there. I preferred reading in my room or going outside to watching TV, although I had a fondness for Don Messir's Jubilee and Walt Disney.

When I went to other kids' houses for supper the families often watched TV. The Beverly Hillbillies was in the suppertime slot and I distinctly remember thinking that it was the most stupid show. I didn't think to much of Bugs Bunny either, and was never lured by The Brady Bunch because it wasn't on CBC. There were a few shows I followed with friends when I got older, but it was less about the company and more about the show itself. And when do I check out what is on TV these days it seems there isn't much worth watching.

When TV questions come up in Trivial Pursuit it seems like I grew up on a different planet than everyone else my age. :)

IceAlisa
08-12-2011, 02:26 AM
I didn't notice that post or part of the post by ag. They are good points. I have the TV on while doing other things as well.

As to not knowing how to pronounce a word: he can look it up on the internet. Online dictionaries often have a little loudspeaker sign that you can click to hear the word pronounced.

But of course this entails getting up, going to the computer, probably turning it on and Googling the word which is not what kids (and adults too) always want to do.

jlai
08-12-2011, 03:30 AM
my problem is that a lot of the negative content in Twilight is embedded in a way that younger readers do not see it (or refuse to see it). Meyer is clearly trying to pass off Bella as a strong, even feminist heroine, and I find that insulting. Yes, some teenagers who read it also see through that and find it insulting as well, but many - many - do not.

This reminds me of the Angelina Ballerina books which I gave my niece to read. While I think ballet is a topic she loves and the books interest her, the deeper meaning of these books annoy the h**k out of me. e.g. When Angelina doesn't get to be the main dancer and becomes an understudy for a ballet the lead dancer will conveniently get injured so Angelina can perform. Whatever.

That said, it's pointless to point that out to my relatives. I highly doubt Angelina's quickly getting what she wants is going to change a young reader's life forever.

iloveemoticons
08-12-2011, 03:48 AM
It's possible that your son's vocabulary has improved, just not in his speech. As a kid, I read a lot and always aced vocabulary tests and used plenty of bigger words while writing. But I wasn't much more articulate than my peers who didn't read, probably because I was used to the words in print but not in speech.

I agree with this, I had a similar experience and didn't use advanced words in speech. Overall, I think both reading and TV have their advantages. I've found it's a lot easier to retain facts and information through reading than through watching TV, reading develops vocabulary and reading speed/comprehension, which will really pay off with all kinds of things, including standardized testing. TV is just relaxing and gives people something in common to talk about with others. Everything in moderation, I say.

Prancer
08-12-2011, 04:00 AM
But I think it's fair to say that a good proportion of the population watches TV passively and indiscriminately

But don't you think a good proportion of people who read books read the same way? Aren't there an awful lot of crappy books out there that are just as bad as any television program? Is reading so inherently superior that just reading is better than just watching television?

Maybe television is getting a bad rap.

The Benefits of Bozo: Proof that TV doesn't harm kids. (http://www.slate.com/id/2136372/)

the data revealed a small positive uptick in test scores for kids who got to watch more television when they were young.:eek:

The Good Things About Television (http://www.media-awareness.ca/english/parents/television/good_things_tv.cfm)

Smarter kids through television: debunking myths old and new (http://community.seattletimes.nwsource.com/archive/?date=20070222&slug=tvoped22)

numbers123
08-12-2011, 04:05 AM
I've found it's a lot easier to retain facts and information through reading than through watching TV, reading develops vocabulary and reading speed/comprehension, which will really pay off with all kinds of things, including standardized testing. TV is just relaxing and gives people something in common to talk about with others. Everything in moderation, I say.

In general, I retain more if I hear it. Each of us are different in our learning styles. I retain more if I hear it as I can visualize in my mind what I was doing when I heard it.

For people who are kinetic learners, they are often advised to have something in their hands to enhance the experience. Like stress balls or coins or something. And many of doodle when listening to presentations. In reading for retention you don't always have option. It is a matter of learning style preference.

If I am reading for pleasure, I can often remember the book plot or ending, which is why purchasing books is so not cost effective for me. I will read it once.

The Twilight series or other such series remind me of Cherry Ames, Bobsy Twins, Sue (someone), Hardy Boys. Easy read, stories that are fantasy yet can start a love of reading. Really berating them for weak female leads - what is Juliet? someone who kills herself over love? That's a strong role model?

gkelly
08-12-2011, 04:37 AM
Really berating them for weak female leads - what is Juliet? someone who kills herself over love? That's a strong role model?

Of course, you could say the same about Romeo, so it's not really a gender thing.

At least Juliet tries to work the pretend-death plot first, but it doesn't work out.

Lainerb
08-12-2011, 04:53 AM
The internet is worse than either. All three only utilize 2-3 senses at the most and come no where close to actual experiences.

manhn
08-12-2011, 05:26 AM
All three only utilize 2-3 senses at the most and come no where close to actual experiences.

Huh? So, if I was reading a passage about a person reading a book (or god forbid, reading something on the internet), how is me actually reading inferior?

PrincessLeppard
08-12-2011, 05:34 AM
Of course, you could say the same about Romeo, so it's not really a gender thing.

At least Juliet tries to work the pretend-death plot first, but it doesn't work out.

Because the Friar suggests it. She was going to off herself until he brought it up.

Lainerb
08-12-2011, 05:43 AM
Huh? So, if I was reading a passage about a person reading a book (or god forbid, reading something on the internet), how is me actually reading inferior?

Would you rather have hot and wild sex, watch porn or read about it?

manhn
08-12-2011, 05:52 AM
Would you rather have hot and wild sex, watch porn or read about it?

Would you rather be dead, watch someone die on tv, or read about it?

Lainerb
08-12-2011, 05:55 AM
I'd rather live life through all my senses.

Japanfan
08-12-2011, 06:00 AM
But don't you think a good proportion of people who read books read the same way? Aren't there an awful lot of crappy books out there that are just as bad as any television program? Is reading so inherently superior that just reading is better than just watching television?

Maybe television is getting a bad rap.


There are a lot of crappy books out there for sure. I put in a lot of time choosing my books (i.e. reading Amazon reviews and lists) and put down a lot of books I try out. But I think reading involves a different kind of intentionality than television. People usually choose their books from a bookstore, a library or a free bin and at a given point in time there are more books to choose from than television programs to choose from.

Maybe some people will read anything that is available, but I would suspect a higher level of discrimination among readers than TV watchers in general.

Someone who devours Harlequin romances is likely using their brain less than someone who watches 'Law and Order' or CSI type shows and goodness knows, there are enough Harlequin addicts out there.

However, to me it seems quite obvious that if you surveyed the general population, you'd find more TV watchers than readers and more hours spent watching TV than reading. And the popularity of reality TV speaks for itself. Reading as a medium may not be inherently superior but much of TV seems to focus on a lower common denominator. And IMO there is something pacifying and potentially addictive about the electro-magnetic waves or energy that TV emits. It is easier to manipulate and there is more to manipulate (images, sound and color versus one-dimensional words on the printed page). And advertising dollars and consumerism are a good reason to manipulate the public. Television and advertising go hand-in-hand.

Isn't it easier for for one's brain to wander when reading than when subjected to a bombardment of images and sound? Isn't it easier to put down a bad book than turn off bad TV?