Ian Realo The Hidden complexities inMy Little Pony: Friendship is Magic in relation to social theme’s and cultural icons
Thesis• My Little Pony: Friendship is Magic is a children’s show originally aimed towards a demographic of eleven to twelve year old girls. However, since its inception, the show has been critically praised for its deep, complex and unorthodox plot lines not usually found in shows aimed towards children. In my study, I aim to examine these complexities, tying them to a wide array of mature social theme’s and deep rooted cultural icons, showing that complexity and children media are not always separate, but can sometimes mesh together to form something great.
Source #1• VISUAL COMPLEXITY AND YOUNG CHILDRENS LEARNING FROM TELEVISION (1982) Journal of Human Communication Research• ALICIA J. WELCH, JAMES H. WATT Jr.• Studied the impact of Sesame Street segments on a group of 48 four and five year old children. Study targeted three specific variables, visual attention, recall and recognition in regards to both Static and Dynamic complexity. Their study showed “strong negative relationships between static complexity and all three viewer variables”, and “strong positive results between dynamic complexity and both attention and recognition, and between attention and both types of learning”. Study showed that there was no significant relationship between dynamic complexity and recall• This research shows that the complexities in children TV shows are very beneficial towards youth, providing skills that are elementary towards building higher IQ and succeeding in academia.
Source #2• Television is "easy" and print is "tough": The differential investment of mental effort in learning as a function of perceptions and attributions. (1984). Journal of Educational Psychology• Salomon, Gavriel• This study was on the amount of invested mental effort (AIME) and learning through two different media types in children aged eleven to twelve. Those media’s being, television and the written word. The study showed that television is “perceived it as more realistic and easy” and one of the easiest media’s to digest and understand• This research shows television is very easy to comprehend, therefore making its knowledge very accessible to younger demographics, enabling children to take more from television than from most other media’s
Methodology-Popular Culture• Cultural Studies and the Study of Popular Culture. Athens: University of Georgia, 2003.• Storey, John• Researching Childrens Popular Culture: the Cultural Spaces of Childhood. London: Routledge, 2002.• Mitchell, Claudia, and Jacqueline Reid-Walsh.• These books details the ways in which to research via popular culture in relation to children and other demographics. The method I will be using for my study involves watching the episodes, taking note of the specific complexities revolving the plot lines and cultural references included in both past and future episodes. (Currently, My Little Pony: Friendship is Magic has 34 total episodes contained in two seasons. MLP has been approved from a third season)• This approach allows me to gain a wide scope of information on the series, looking deep into the complex theme’s of the show and relating those theme’s towards well understood social theories and cultural icons. However, this methodology prevents me from actual testing these theme’s influences on children. But, as my previous source states, complex theme’s in TV shows have a large benefit towards children, something I do not have to reprove
Works Cited• Mitchell, Claudia, and Jacqueline Reid-Walsh. Researching Childrens Popular Culture: the Cultural Spaces of Childhood. London: Routledge, 2002. Print.• Salomon, Gavriel. "Television Is "easy" and Print Is "tough": The Differential Investment of Mental Effort in Learning as a Function of Perceptions and Attributions." Journal of Educational Psychology 76.4 (1984): 647-58. Print.• Storey, John, and John Storey. Cultural Studies and the Study of Popular Culture. Athens: University of Georgia, 2003. Print.• Welch, Alicia J., and James H. Watt. "Visual Complexity And Young ChildrenS Learning From Television." Human Communication Research 8.2 (1982): 133-45. Print.