The Anchor: 5 things you didn’t know about kids’ TV viewing habits

18 Oct,2012

By Tabassum Modi

 

# 1 There’s not much difference between what children from metro and non-metro cities are watching on TV: One would assume that kids living in metro cities are over-exposed to television and would have choices different from their non-metro counterparts. But our recent survey showed that irrespective of their location, kids prefer the same channels. This means that their choices in other areas of life are also converging to make Indian kids into a homogenous group.

 

#2 Just 22% of kids watch TV after school: The EduMedia survey conducted revealed statistics that are shocking. Children spend at least 8 to 10 hours in school. Assuming most children and finish school by 3pm, they are left with about 7 hours approximately before going to sleep. Besides the amount of time that these children spend on travelling, they dedicate about 3 hours to coaching classes or completing a heap of homework, they actually have very little time left for leisure activities. This daily routine of children leaves them with little time for family, friends and entertainment – including spending time in front of TV.

 

#3 Sony and Discovery channels are the topmost favourite channels with kids: In our survey of kids between 11 and 17, we found that instead of children’s and youth channels, it is Sony and Discovery channels which are ruling the roost when it comes to kids’ favourites. It is surprising that kids’ channels like Cartoon Network and youth channels like MTV and Channel V are not the top favourites. Does this mean then, that kids are not getting to watch what they want? Or are they growing older faster?

 

#4 Kids actually don’t like watching TV alone; they prefer watching with their families: Contrary to popular assumptions that kids are tantrum-throwing monsters who will hog the TV viewing space, it was observed that they in fact like to sit down with their family while watching TV. This would lead them to step out of their ‘me’ zone and learn to accommodate other family members’ choices.

 

#5 Watching too much TV can lead to children hitting puberty faster!A wide array of current scientific research in the field of child health tells us that TV is the cause why children are hitting puberty earlier today. Needless to say, children are growing up at a much higher pace than we can catch up with. This has a good as well as a bad side to it. They seem to understand the dynamics of the adult world and often deal with situations like adults. They become more aware and informed about the happenings around them. While we appreciate this, we might also want to take a look at the rising rate of pregnancies, drug abuse and anti-social activities among children.

 

Tabassum Modi is Executive Director at EduMedia India

 

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