Along with images of natural disasters and violence, one all-too-common news item that can be distressing to kids is reports of hate crimes. Seeing or hearing about hate-motivated assaults and vandalism of homes, cemeteries and places of worship in media, can lead to fear and anxiety in young people, especially if they belong to a vulnerable group. In many cases, the effect will be worse because news isn't the only place Canadian kids see hate and racism: almost half see hateful content online at least once a month, and one in six sees it every day.
If you haven’t seen the story of the Hot Dog Princess that has been making the rounds of the Internet, I suggest you read this Buzzfeed article. To summarize: it was “Princess Week” at five-year-old Ainsley’s dance class and she decided to wear a hot dog costume. As a parent, this is the kind of youthful impertinence I can get behind. After all, THIS was a princess who really knew who she was, a princess that was not like other princesses, a #hotdogprincess.
Regulation of television content in Canada is primarily a voluntary system. Broadcasters, cable systems and specialty channels follow voluntary codes of conduct that address issues such as violence, gender representation, ethics, and advertising to children.
The holidays are a perfect time to cozy up as a family and watch festive movies and TV shows together. It’s also a time when kids are on the receiving end of a lot of marketing, and some kids will be given new tech devices as gifts.
We've compiled some of our best resources for managing tech at home during the holidays, from setting rules around digital devices, to teaching kids about consumerism, to engaging with your kids on the content you’re watching together.
Talking to kids about violence in the media they consume – television, movies, video games, music and the Internet – can help them put media violence into perspective and perhaps diffuse some of its power.