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Argumentative essay- Thesis Statement - Watching television makes people smarter?


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I am writing an argumentative essay on whether television makes you smarter or not. this is what I have so far (the introduction) All comments are welcome!

Idiot box, boob tube, telly, goggle box, or whatever you want to call it, the television has been around for decades now and in nearly every household there is at least one television set present. It has become part of most people's daily life; we might watch the news, movies, documentaries, game shows, reality shows, talent shows, series, and whether we like it or not, a lot of advertisements. There is something on T.V. for almost everyone. There are cartoons for children of different age groups, shows for seniors, programmes for business people, daytime series for housewives, wild-life programmes for nature enthusiasts, and the list goes on. Since the television made its appearance in society, there has been a lot of debate on the subject whether it is good for people or not. The average person in the United States now watches over 151 hours of television a month, which is well over 5 hours a day, and while there are many concerned people convinced that watching television makes people brain-dead, you might well be surprised that watching television can actually make you smarter.

Can someone help me out with the thesis statement please? I;m not sure whether "while there are many concerned people convinced that watching television makes people brain-dead, you might well be surprised that watching television can actually make you smarter." is a good thesis statement for an argumentative essay.

What I am going to write about is:
-series like 24 actually makes you smarter
-news on television is often better than biased newspapers.
-children from low income families learn more from the television than their parents.

All suggestions are greatly appreciated!
Thanks...
J

Here's my editing of your first paragraph. The first edit is subject-verb agreement and the second got rid of some redundancy (in my opinion). I like the content btw!



Idiot box, boob tube, telly, goggle box, or whatever you want to call it, the television has been around for decades now and in nearly every household there is at least one television set present. It has become part of most people's daily lives; we might watch the news, movies, documentaries, game shows, reality shows, talent shows, series, and whether we like it or not, a lot of advertisements. There is something on T.V. for almost everyone. There are cartoons for children of different age groups, shows for seniors, programmes for business people, daytime series for housewives, wild-life programmes for nature enthusiasts, and the list goes on. Since the television made its appearance in society, there has been a lot of debate on whether it is good for people or not. The average person in the United States now watches over 151 hours of television a month, which is well over 5 hours a day, and while there are many concerned people convinced that watching television makes people brain-dead, you might well be surprised that watching television can actually make you smarter.




Now on to your actual concerns-your thesis. I think your current one isn't too shabby, but if you did want something more specific, here are some that I just made up (please keep in mind that I am assuming you can make stuff up for this lol... Take out "statistics" and other such words with something else, unless I happen to be making up something that is legit) :

1. While some people argue that watching television is counter-productive, stimulating and interesting shows like 24 cause one to learn more about the world and think better (you could talk about logic i suppose?), news channels are more unbiased and informative than their paper-based counterparts, and statistics suggest a correlation between academic performance and television exposure in low-income families.

2. Contrary to popular opinion, watching television regularly can be a very intellectually stimulating and rewarding experience.

3. While some doubt that television benefits people, these naysayers ignore the fact that television makes people more informed and thoughtful.


Obviously, you can "mix" together these theses as you see fit. I personally would go with my #1, but of course, this is up to your discretion. At the same time, maybe you don't like any of the ones I've provided! Regardless, best of luck on your interesting essay.
hey Anthony... This is what i have got so far, if you have time to take a look again that would be great. Let me know what you think... My deadline is later today, and I still need to write a conclusion of about 300 words. (and a title of course) I will have a look at your essay most definitely later on! When is your deadline?

Julien


Idiot box, boob tube, telly, goggle box, or whatever you want to call it, the television has been around for decades now and in nearly every household there is at least one television set to be found. It has become part of most people's daily lives; we might watch the news, movies, documentaries, game shows, reality shows, talent shows, series, and whether we like it or not, a lot of advertisements. There is something on T.V. for almost everyone. There are cartoons for children of different age groups, shows for seniors, programmes for business people, daytime series for housewives, wild-life programmes for nature enthusiasts, and the list goes on. Since the television made its appearance in society, there has been a lot of debate on whether it is good for us or not. The average person in the United States now watches over 151 hours of television a month, which is well over 5 hours a day, and while there are many concerned people convinced that watching television has a negative impact on today's society, you might well be surprised that watching television can actually make you smarter.
First of all, we are warned that watching television has the same mind-numbing effect on the brain as staring at a wall. When we engage in watching television the mind shuts off and goes into a state similar to that of being deeply relaxed or even asleep. However, watching shows like Fox Network's hit show "24", a series of 24 episodes per season covering the life of an anti-terrorist agent using the method of real time narration , really make the viewer's mind work. Mindless escapism is no longer an option as you have to make sense of the fast-paced story line and get to know the 21 characters and their role in the plot. The brain is constantly stimulated, and has to process lots of bits of information to keep up with the ever evolving story. The viewer must pay close attention during the hour, make inferences, and keep up to speed with the ever changing social relationships between the characters. Shows like these on television are, in fact, enhancing the viewer's cognitive faculties, not making us brain-dead. Therefore, the popular media today is steadily, yet almost imperceptibly sharpening our minds while we slouch on the couch watching these shows. This sort of positive brainwashing is also called: the Sleeping Curve.
Secondly, many studies persist on the negative effect that television is said to have on children. Kids watching several hours of TV per day are spending less time on their homework and are therefore performing badly in school. It is also pointed out that they are to be socially less competent because there is less conversation to be had at home. Parents are advised to limit their hours before the TV to a minimum. Even though there is some truth in these notions, this does not apply to anyone. Children of impoverished families benefit enormously from watching many hours of television on a daily basis, and even achieve better grades in school because of those hours spent in front of the T.V. Sadly, it is true that most parents who are on welfare provide no intellectual stimulation for their children, and spend less time speaking to their kids as working class families and higher educated parents with busy careers do, resulting in a much weaker vocabulary as opposed to kids their own age from wealthier families. Stimulation is what children need and if they cannot find that in their parents, they are better off watching the telly. This can also be seen on an international scale. Just like children living in low income families, kids living in poor countries that get exposed to a couple of hours of television per day, dramatically enhance their reading capabilities and perform better in school; thus, becoming smarter than kids who do not get a chance to watch television. On top of this all, when kids are watching the right programmes, and with the right parental guidance they can learn even more about things they did not have any prior knowledge of, and can be inspired and motivated to do wonderful things.
Another common belief that many people, especially politicians and higher educated people share, is that newspapers are more trustworthy, and contain more information than the news on TV does. They also claim that this news is more factual and more retainable, saying that you actually learn more from newspapers than from watching the news on TV. Unfortunately though, many newspapers are biased in their reporting and are often considered to be left wing or right wing, or tend to favour a single political party all together. Although this is no secret to anyone, it does however, raises the question whether you are getting factual news, instead of what you would either want, or expect to read. The channels of the British Broadcasting Corporation, though, have been providing their audience with a predominantly serious news agenda, both foreign and domestic, and have remained unbiased and impartial, and have not shifted towards the more popular tabloid approach. Also, studies have shown that when watching the news on television the memory is retained better rather than reading the same news in a newspaper; consequently, making people who watch the news on TV gain more knowledge; thus, becoming smarter.
Idiot box, boob tube, telly, goggle box, or whatever you want to call it, the television has been around for decades now and in nearly every household there is at least one television set to be found. It has become part of most people's daily lives; we might watch the news, movies, documentaries, game shows, reality shows, talent shows, series, and whether we like it or not, a lot of advertisements. There is something on T.V. for almost everyone. There are cartoons for children of different age groups, shows for seniors, programmes for business people, daytime series for housewives, wild-life programmes for nature enthusiasts, and the list goes on. Since the television made its appearance in society, there has been a lot of debate on whether it is good for us or not. The average person in the United States now watches over 151 hours of television a month, which is well over 5 hours a day, and while there are many concerned people convinced that watching television has a negative impact on today's society, you might well be surprised that watching television can actually make you smarter.
First of all, we are warned -Who warns us? Also, I would suggest making this active voice, such as "Scientists warn us..." You could replace "scientist" with another authority figure that watching television has the same mind-numbing effect on the brain as staring at a wall. When we engage in watching -I feel like this should just be "When we watch television..." in order to reduce wordiness and in order to be more direct. television, the mind shuts off and enters a state similar to that of being deeply relaxed or even asleep. However, watching shows like Fox Network's hit show "24", a series that uses thethe method of real time narration -the grammatical issue was dangling modifier and I also edited out what I consider wordiness , really makes the viewer's mind work. Mindless escapism is no longer an option as you have to make sense of the fast-paced story line and get to know the 21 characters and their roles in the plot. The brain is constantly stimulated, and has to process lots of bits of information to keep up with the ever evolving story. The viewer must pay close attention -delete stuff here-, make inferences, and keep up to speed with the characters' ever changing social relationships while watching the show . Shows like these on television are, in fact, enhancing the viewer's cognitive faculties, not making them brain-dead. Therefore, the popular media today is steadily, yet almost imperceptibly sharpening our minds while we slouch on the couch watching these shows. Researchers call this effect the -delete colon- the Sleeping Curve.
Secondly, many studies persist on the negative effect that television supposedly has on children. Kids watching several hours of TV per day are spending less time on their homework and are therefore performing badly in school. Some also argue that these kids are to be socially less competent because there is less opportunity forconversation -delete stuff- at home. Parents are advised -you might want to change this to active voice if you can- to limit their children's exposure to television. Even though there is some truth in these notions, they does not apply to anyone -i would be inclined to avoid a very one-sided argument and thus say they do not affect "EVERYONE," but that's just me-. Children from impoverished families benefit enormously from watching television regularly, and even achieve better grades in school because of those hours spent in front of the T.V. Sadly, it is true that most parents who are on welfare provide no intellectual stimulation for their children, and spend less time speaking to their kids as more highly educated and working parents -delete stuff here-, resulting in a much weaker vocabulary than the vocabularies of their peers from wealthier families. Stimulation is what children need and if they cannot find that in their parents, they are better off watching the telly. This can also be seen on an international scale. Just like children living in low income families, kids living in poor countries that can watch a few hours of television daily -delete comma (I think)- dramatically enhance their reading capabilities and perform better in school; thus, they become smarter than kids who do not get a chance to watch television. On top of all of this, when kids are watching the right programmes -delete comma- and with the right parental guidance, (comma) they can learn even more about concepts they did not have any prior knowledge of, and can be inspired and motivated to do wonderful things -i would be more specific. like they would be more motivated to further their education or dedicate their lives to help other children learn? etc.-.
Another common belief that many people, especially politicians and more highly educated people share, is that newspapers are more trustworthy and informative than the news reported through the television. They also claim that information provided by newspapers is more factual and more retainable, saying that you actually learn more by reading than hearing the news. Unfortunately though, many newspapers are biased in their reporting and are often contain significant political bias, to the point, in some cases, of blatantly imposing certain political views on their readers. Although this phenomenon[/b ]is no secret to anyone, it does [b], (comma)however, raise the question of whether you are getting factual news -delete wordiness-. The channels of the British Broadcasting Corporation, though, have been providing their audience with a predominantly serious news agenda, regarding both foreign and domestic issues, and have remained unbiased and impartial. (period) They have remained steadfast in reporting unbiased news, as opposed to the unreliable tabloids. Also, studies have shown that when watching the news on television,(comma) people retain information better -delete rather- than they do reading the same news in a newspaper; consequently, this finding suggests thatpeople who watch the news on TV gain more knowledge and thus, become smarter.


Alright so I'm tired (it's late where I am), so I edited this rather hastily. Be critical of my editing! On the top of my head, your main errors seem to be semicolons (they are basically weak periods so each side of a semicolon must make sense if read on its own and there can only be 2 semicolons per sentence, except in convoluted lists), commas (that may just be me though), and wordiness (again maybe that's just me). And my essays are due in about 24 hours; I would be really happy if you read them and could leave a comment within 12ish hours. At the same time, it's OK if you can't read mine :) Good luck on the essay!



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