Other stories filed under Opinion
Does SpongeBob Bring Stupidity?
September 1, 2015
Squidward: “Do you have to stand so close? You’re making me claustrophobic.”
Patrick: “What does claustrophobic mean?”
SpongeBob: “I think it means he’s afraid of Santa Claus.”
Patrick: “Ho, ho, ho!”
SpongeBob: “Stop it, Patrick! You’re scaring him!”
Who lives in a pineapple under the sea? SpongBob Squarepants! The imaginative cartoon involving a sponge and his friends has attracted the minds of young children since 1999. However, copious adults believe that SpongeBob Squarepants thoroughly corrupts the learning process of kids. Is this justifiable?
Studies have been conducted where 60 four-year-olds were placed into three separate groups for behavioral observation. In one group, the children were shown 9 minutes of the SpongeBob Squarepants cartoon. Within the second group, the kids viewed a slower-paced, educational children’s show off of the Public Broadcasting Service for 9 minutes. The third group avoided television all together and were merely given paper, crayons, and markers for their own free-drawing period. Once this part of the study had been conducted, all of the children were given exercises to test their memory and attention skills.
As one might assume, those who watched SpongeBob for nine minutes reacted at a much slower rate than the groups of children coloring, or viewing a “more realistic” cartoon. The study blatantly delineates that this animated show about an aquatic sponge and his adventures only affects children in a negative light. As specifically displayed in the quote given above, SpongeBob provides some wit; however, if children do not fully grasp enough knowledge to understand the jokes provided, the misinterpretations can lead to corrupted decision-making skills.
While the data seems easily solidified, personally, I never came to this conclusion as a child. Being a current adolescent of age seventeen, I grew up in a world where this humorous cartoon was quite popular. However, raised as a child in a strict household, my mother always banned SpongeBob as she firmly believed in these types of studies. But did this make me any smarter of a person? No. It certainly did not.
As a student in high school, I am exposed to peers coming from all different types of households. Some of my friends appreciate SpongeBob and worshipped it as children, others despised the show for the strange situations it provides. But a person witnessing my peers’ learning skills, it seems that certain shows like SpongeBob affect individuals differently. Yes, some children who watch SpongeBob might take more time learning. However, others seem less affected by the “damaging” show.
Jennifer LaRue Huget states that, “as a SpongeBob-loving mother of two kids, one now in high school, the other in college, I can’t fathom that watching SpongeBob has hurt my offspring.” The truth behind this situation seems to be that it is a parent’s choice whether or not to allow their children to watch SpongeBob. The over dramatized negative effects, while real, seem blown out of proportion.