Social and Personality Development
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Social development refers to the process or pattern of change that a person undergoes due to interacting with other individuals in the environment (Carpendale & Lewis, 2006). This process continues throughout the life of a person since the stage of childhood. A child can interact with other people in the physical environment or through electronic devices, such as television, computers, and mobile phones. The effect of electronic devices on the social development of children is extremely significant in developed countries (Underwood & Rosen, 2011). In the developed countries, almost every homestead owns at least an electronic device like television, computer, and mobile phone. Electronic devices can affect children’s social development positively or negatively depending on whether the caregivers monitor the use of the electronic devices.
The negative effects of electronic devices on the social development of children may be indirect or direct. The most common indirect effect of electronic devices is the development of obesity or overweight among the users (Parke & Stewart, 2011). This happens when the users spend many hours with the electronic devices every day and out of physical activities. The direct, negative effects of electronic devices include aggression and hostility, nightmares, intensified fears, social isolation, and pornography and cyber bullying. Therefore, children may acquire antisocial behaviors or fail to undergo sufficient social development due to inappropriate use of electronic devices (Shaffer, 2009). It is the responsibility of parents and other caretakers to determine appropriate usage of various electronic devices (Underwood & Rosen, 2011).
Therefore, caregivers should implement various strategies to avoid the negative effects of electronic devices on the social development of their children. Some of the strategies include limiting the number of hours that children should spend with electronic devices, determining appropriate television programs, and determining appropriate websites for their children (Parke & Stewart, 2011). Electronic devices should influence the lives of children in a positive manner.