Just north of us, Seattle is leaving cable TV and satellite in big numbers. In fact, a study quoted by The Seattle Times finds over 1/3rd have cut the cord. My guess is when the Seahawks play is among the only times that people watch live TV.
TV-streaming services have taken a big bite out of network television viewership, and a sizable number of households rely solely on streaming. According to Nielsen, more than one out of three households (37%) in the Seattle market have neither cable nor satellite television.
A study looked at how pain is depicted in popular movies for 4 to 6-year old children. What makes this study somewhat interesting is that it relies on the premise that children will learn from watched movies how to deal with pain.
The results were shocking. Pain was frequently depicted, approximately nine times per hour. Seventy-nine per cent of pain instances involved characters being seriously injured or experiencing pain due to violent acts. Although everyday pains are the most common pain experiences young children experience in real life, everyday pains comprised only 20 per cent of the pain instances. Medical and procedural pain, like needles, as well as chronic pains were depicted less than one per cent of the time.
The study seems flawed in the sense that it set out to analyze pain through the lens of fantasy worlds. Movies can be educational, yes, but they are there to tell stories first, not educate young children. Parents could — and should — watch these movies with their children and talk about what happened. What did the children like and dislike?
The movies that our grandchildren have enjoyed lately include. Angry Birds, Moana, Frozen II and others. They unsurprisingly prefer Disney+ as the streaming channel with the most animated movies they are interested in. Most live-action movies are less interesting to them.
I think more children learn about pain these days from what they do most often. If they fall down and get a bump or bruise, that’s a very real pain to be managed and evaluated. Learning about pain could come from movies, I suppose, but it’s more likely from all types of entertainment: games, daycare, playing inside and out, social interaction with brothers, sisters, parents, friends and other children.
This study sort of outlines my general feeling that anything can be studied and biased to a certain type of observation. Not sure how useful most of these studies are other than to make us think about movies as teaching tools. Maybe it’s better to teach children to use their imagination when watching movies than think of them as educational opportunities. What do you think?