As a parent, here’s an interesting question to ponder over…
To what extent do the programmes your kids watch on TV influence their behaviour?
When I was a kid, my brother and I used to rush home from school and settle down to watch Philip Schofield (and later Andi Peters) entertain us from the “Broom Cupboard”. Those were the days of Byker Grove, Grange Hill, Mr Ben and The Mysterious Cities of Gold, to name just a few of my favourites. Do you remember any of these?
But it’s all different now! In fact, I feel sorry for the kids of today because cartoons are just NOT the same as they used to be. Don’t you think?
That said, there are a few modern good ‘uns about. Charlie and Lola is very funny, and I love Postman Pat. But if I had to name a favourite, hands down it would be Peppa Pig!
In fact, the whole El Morshdy family loves Peppa. My toddler takes her big cuddly George to bed, and we all visited Peppa Pig World a few months ago.
Peppa Pig is just ace. It’s humorous, entertaining, and there’s usually a little moral woven in somewhere too. We often watch it together and have a little giggle at Daddy Pig’s antics. And the show makers must be doing something right. Peppa Pig turned ten this month, and if you’re a fan too, why not check out this fun trivia quiz I found online and see if you can beat my respectable 16/19!
Click Here to Take the Quiz >>> OINK! It’s the Peppa Pig quiz that’s only for GROWN-UPS!
But is Peppa Pig really what it seems?
As a Peppa Pig fan, I was surprised to see some news reports suggesting there’s a darker side to the cartoon. In fact, it seems that Peppa Pig could actually have a lot to answer for.
Some parents believe Peppa Pig is a bad influence because young viewers are copying Peppa’s “naughty behaviour” and even answering their parents back. Here’s a revealing discussion about this on Mumsnet.
So does this mean that children should be discouraged from watching this much-loved cartoon?
It’s certainly a very interesting question and whilst I won’t be switching off Peppa Pig anytime soon, it does makes you think about what influences children are exposed to.
It’s all in a day’s work…
As parents, we’re responsible for kick-starting our children’s education.
It’s up to us to teach children what’s right and wrong and to ensure they’re exposed to the right sort of influences. But this isn’t always easy. With children’s TV on pretty much every waking hour (not like the couple hours a day that we had as kids), and the internet making kids entertainment available 24/7, it is a worry what children have the ability to discover at the click of a button.
So is it true that today’s children are exposed to too much, and is it possible for parents to protect their children from all this bad influence?
As parents, how much notice should we take of cartoons that have been designed for young children? Are we right to assume that they’re “OK” because they’ve been created for a younger audience, or should we be looking a little more closely to check the message is appropriate?
And can we really blame a family of cartoon pigs for children who have become a little out of hand?
Or is this fear just a load of tosh?
I think both sides of the argument have their valid points
For example, according to psychologist Dr Aric Sigman, “some 80% of brain development is between birth and three years old, so it they spend a lot of time watching the TV, they will copy forms of behaviours that they see on the TV.”
As a result, it does seem reasonable to conclude that children will mirror the behaviour they see in their favourite cartoons. In Peppa Pig’s case, you could argue that Peppa is a little bit bossy; you could say that George is a bit of a tantrum-throwing crybaby, and Daddy Pig is a tad silly. Are these things you really want your children to be exposed to?
But on the flip side, the cartoon also shows a variety of family structures, addresses the realities of working parents, and involves and respects the older generation. I think this is pretty good stuff.
You could also say that Peppa Pig simply portrays the attitude and behaviour of your average child. After all, what child doesn’t have the odd hissy fit? What elder sister hasn’t bossed around her younger siblings, and what family doesn’t occasionally poke fun at daddy?
What do you think?
I’d love to know your views. Do you blame Peppa Pig for your child’s bad behaviour? Are there any programmes your children are barred from watching? How do you protect your little ones from the influences of modern media?
Please let me know your thoughts in the comments below.