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28 of 31 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars This is Must Read material for parents
I was not prepared for what I learned when I read this book. Dr. Cantor is very forthright in telling parents and caregivers the effects of television and movies on children. She reminds us that very young children process the world in a very different way from adults, and we, as adults, have to be very aware of that difference as we choose TV shows and Movies for our...
Published on November 21, 1999 by Trish Kuper

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7 of 27 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars This is what is wrong with families today....
I don't need a book to tell me what my children should not watch. They watch what I put on for them to watch. Half the families in America today put television sets hooked up to cable/sat. in their children's rooms. These are the same parents that get their children internet access in their rooms. Later they want to complain that their children see violence on T.V...
Published on September 24, 2005 by lori ray


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28 of 31 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars This is Must Read material for parents, November 21, 1999
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This review is from: "Mommy, I'm Scared": How TV and Movies Frighten Children and What We Can Do to Protect Them (Paperback)
I was not prepared for what I learned when I read this book. Dr. Cantor is very forthright in telling parents and caregivers the effects of television and movies on children. She reminds us that very young children process the world in a very different way from adults, and we, as adults, have to be very aware of that difference as we choose TV shows and Movies for our kids. She herself was surprised by some of the results of her research, and that honesty was refreshing.
Most interesting to me was the fact that some of these events were singular, ie, happened once, and the now-college aged students remember vividly their fear and their reactions to their exposure to certain shows.
It makes me, as a parent, realize that it is up to ME to serve as the filter through which my children's TV and Movie choices come. If I don't protect them, no one else will.
With the movie and TV ratings guided more by the bottom line than than a concern for our children's emotional welfare, it is even more vital that all parents become aware and actively involved in their kids' viewing habits.
I highly recommend it, but you may not like the conclusions you will probably draw from it. As for us, the tube is off, for now.
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5 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Too bad more parents aren't aware of this research, October 31, 2006
This review is from: "Mommy, I'm Scared": How TV and Movies Frighten Children and What We Can Do to Protect Them (Paperback)
Every parent should own this book, especially parents who THINK they know what "bad" content is. No parent in his or her right mind would allow a preschooler to watch programs featuring murder and mayhem, but sensitive parents realize that the most seemingly innocuous content can produce unexpectedly strong reactions in kids. By way of example, I'm reminded of a friend who was so frightened by a coconut that had a face carved in it (in a G-rated movie) that he refused to visit the grocery store produce section for months! This didn't go over well with his mother, as you can imagine. Cantor's book explains why such a thing occured by reviewing her extensive and rigorous program of research on the types of stimuli that produce fright reactions in children of different ages. It helped me understand why my husband had such strong fright reactions to nuclear war movies as an adolescent in the 80s, and why I was so afraid of clowns in the early 70s. The idea is that perceptual differences exist among kids in different developmental stages, and these differences can put them at risk for significant fright reactions that parents cannot always see coming. Cantor's book also deals with the most effective coping strategies for kids of different ages, thereby empowering parents to help their kids deal with fright reactions that couldn't be prevented (given that parents can't always preview what their kids see and that a G rating is no guarantee of fright-free content). With so many parents allowing their kids to watch the news these days, this book is more important than ever.
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2 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars It's a great book for parents and educators also. The information here is very much needed., June 24, 2010
This review is from: "Mommy, I'm Scared": How TV and Movies Frighten Children and What We Can Do to Protect Them (Paperback)
This is an excellent book for today's media-rich world. It is well-written, and it gives both parents and educators food for thought, as to what children are being indulged with in terms of violence and horror. How can we believe that all of this is not affecting the minds of children. Working in the public schools, I see children who have serious anger issues daily, even today in school. Also, about 1/2 to 2/3 of all First Grade children to high school watch seriously violent films on a regular basis, with little or not parental direction or supervision.

As far as media goes for children, most parents are of the opinion, if it is made for children, then it must be alright. That couldn't be farther from the case. The violence of so many movies, even movies that are being shown in school by administrators and teachers, or brought in to school by children, have serious issues with violence.

All of this warps a child's view of the world, and can have the effect of deadening any compassionate feelings he or she might have for others. It doesn't mean that it necessarily will, because we are preprogrammed with a lot of compassion and ability to show love, but it can do that for children.

Children in the 1st grade have talked to me how they have had nightmares from the movies they have seen on cable television. Chucky movies, Friday the 13th, Nightmare on Elm Street, even Avatar, has much violence and maccabre horror.

Cantor does not avoid delicate issues, it spelling out for parents, just what is happening on TV today, and I feel that public school, and private school, administrators and child study teams should be aware of this, because for some children, this overload of violence and horror, is affecting their mental health, or seriously adding to their difficulties. I've seen one case that was quite close to being miraculous with a 10 year old who was getting D's in most of his classes and couldn't do the simplest math work.

After his parents cut out the TV and video games, movies, during the week, he went from D's to the honor roll. This is a true story of a boy that I tutored. All of that was overloading his mind, and he couldn't concentrate. Even Harry Potter, for some kids, can affect them adversely, not all kids, but for some, it is too dark.

Some little girls are so very sensitive, and the slightest frightening thing affects them, how much more so the more seriously violent and scary things kids are watching today at home and in the movies. Why are so many kids depressed? Why so many ADHD and bipolar children? Is this part of the reason? Most likely it is!

So, this book, I feel, is a great book, a timeless book for now and the future, and I sincerely recommend it.
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7 of 27 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars This is what is wrong with families today...., September 24, 2005
This review is from: "Mommy, I'm Scared": How TV and Movies Frighten Children and What We Can Do to Protect Them (Paperback)
I don't need a book to tell me what my children should not watch. They watch what I put on for them to watch. Half the families in America today put television sets hooked up to cable/sat. in their children's rooms. These are the same parents that get their children internet access in their rooms. Later they want to complain that their children see violence on T.V. and sex on the internet. By the way, these are also the parents that complain about violent video games. Common sense is a beautiful thing and parents need to start using it. If you don't want your children to see "bad" movies, don't let them go to the movies. If you don't want them to see certain things on the interent, don't give them access. Hate video games? Easy, don't buy them, don't allow your children to have a game system at all. My personal favorite, if you are having a hard time keeping your children away from "bad" T.V., take away the T.V. Cancel your cable and rent family friendly dvds. Please stop allowing your children to run you and make their own choices. Learn to tell them "No, you can't always get what you want."
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"Mommy, I'm Scared": How TV and Movies Frighten Children and What We Can Do to Protect Them
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