Forming Media Relationships

As of last Thursday, I have started working from home and will continue to do so for the next few months. New into the realm of the home work environment, it has taken me a few days to arrange a set up that is comfortable and conducive to getting work done.

That being said, I have always been a multi-tasker (my friend and co-worker, Joy, attributes this to the fact that I am a gemini). I frequently will read or do something with at least one other thing, such as the radio, going on in the background. This habit is confounding (and annoying) to my husband but I find it to be an almost cathartic, at least while reading for pleasure or just relaxing.

So, as I hunkered down to work, I tuned into Food Network while I gathered some things and then left the food shows on in the background. By the end of my work day on Friday, I felt that I was forming a personal relationship with the likes of Giada De Laurentiis, Bobby Flay, Paula Deen and a host of other daytime cooking show chefs.

This development, in turn, caused me to think about how easily we are influenced by the media in our environment and how this is particularly true for children. Recent studies have evaluated the effects of adult television programming (even with knowledge building programs, such as Jeopardy!) being played in the background while children are working or playing. The study found that background TV interrupted play. Having read this study, why did I think that the effect would be much different for me as I worked?

This experience/reflection caused me to arrive at 2 conclusions:

1. We (parents, teachers and other caregivers) need to use discretion when choosing the TV programming that children are exposed to, even if kids are not directly watching the program.

and

2. For the remainder of my time working from home, the TV will be off for me. Thank goodness for iTunes and my iPod!

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