A child’s ill manners may not have to do with upbringing or the home. There are other influential factors like televisions, peer pressure or societal influence that could define a child. BLESSING EDET writes
Such is the case of Mrs. Simbiat Mabso who was shocked to see her 10-year-old son being called Jagaban, a nickname, he asked his classmates to be hailing him with. “I wouldn’t have known because I am not the one who usually picks him after closing hour, but that day, I got off work early and decided to surprise him.
On getting to his school, I asked the security officials for him and they burst into laughter exclaiming, ‘ah! Jagaban!’ I was wondering if they were talking about someone else, but to my shock, even as my son walked to me from his class, people were hailing him saying Jagaban! Baddo omo mushin! He waved his hand at them in a majestic manner, and replied like a tout; “Yeah! That is me, the tough guy of mushin kingdom! When I asked him on our way home where he got the titles, he said he saw it in a cartoon movie.
I later went to see the movie and I was angry because of the vulgar language and urchin behavior displayed in the cartoon.”
Johanna Bot, a hair stylist, said that she has great concerns about the so-called children shows and cartoons of nowadays. She said that the television shows that children watched these days are a contributory factor to negative behaviour in them. “I don’t think all these children television stations are doing any good. Just last week, I was in my shop when my brother son’s classmate, a girl, 10-years-old, came to visit.
They were playing and all of a sudden, I noticed that they were too quiet. I looked around for them and I saw them at the back of the shop kissing. I wondered where they learnt such from and on inquiry, they told me that they watched it on a children’s show on television, Nickelodeon, particularly . So you can imagine what these television programmes expose them to?” She queried
Joy Orafidiya, a mother of four, said that she is strict with the type of programs her children watch on television. “My children only watch television after studying and they mostly watch children programs like specific cartoons, NatGoe world- animal world, science shows like Jimmy Neutron and arts.
I always tell them that, if they don’t read their books for a period of time, they won’t watch television. The cartoons my children watch has positive impact on them because sometimes they speak in simply similar voices and use vulgar words in which I try to correct them. They don’t tune to any other stations apart from those ones I mentioned earlier and when they do tune to other stations, I make them understand that it’s not for their age and teach them what the program is all about,” she said.
Not all parents agree with strict monitoring of what their children watch. Some believed that if the kids were well brought up in the first place, there would be no need to monitor them.
For instance, Dorothy Amalahan stated that she is not strict about the kind of movies her children watch. “I trust my children a lot. They cannot just buy anyhow movie or tune to any program not meant for them. They love watching animal world and other action films, they also watch cartoons that are non-violent and they don’t practice it. I am proud that they are not distracted by the movies they watch because they read at the right time and they are brilliant. They do the house chores and at their free time, they watch movies or play, I am not usually at home because I am a business woman but my children are well `behaved,” she believed!
Above voices the mothers’ views but teenagers differ on such. They said they get inspired from the TV.
John Chiamaka, a 15-year-old student of Agidingbi Senior Grammer School, watches TV only when it has to do with music shows as she aspires to be a singer. She said some of the television programs go a long in molding the lifestyle of teenagers. “All these shows and movies could actually be awful and “truly influences us badly. Most of the slangs we speak often times, we got from TV. Many of my classmates discuss movies and shows that they watch. They also exchange unhealthy movies like pornography,” she confessed.
Abanagoni Musa, a 14 year old senior secondary, SS1 student, believed he is grown enough to know what is good for him. “My parents are too strict on the type of movie I watch. For instance, they don’t like me watching Zeeworld and Telemundo channels because they thought it is not for my age. I love watching Nickelodeon but that is for them, for me, it is channel movie 166,114,112 and some others,” he said.
For Loveth, a 12-year- old SS2 student, Zeeworld, an Indian film channel, is the best channel she loves watching because of their mode of dressing but that is if her parents are not at home.”My best television programme is India and Philippians. Sometimes I practice their dance step.
Television programmes according to Eunice Adesire, child/teenage psychological consultant, affects the development process of a child, regardless of the program content. “It is important for parents and guardians to pay close attention to the television programs their children watch. Although Film Censors Boards usually have age restrictions on movies, it is important that parents make sure that their children stick to these rules and that they regulate the type of movies and television programs their children watch.
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