The media and the commercialization of childhood – marginalization of educational values

Education and Press
This paper discusses the global trend of marginalization of educational values and the promotion of hedonistic life concept offered by mass media to children and youth. Today, it is quite impossible to consider any aspects of life of children and youth outside the context of the media influence. Media are pushing out other factors of socialization (school, family, church …) and are influencing the formation of lifestyles. Messages and contents conveyed by media often decide the criteria for behaviour, attitudes and values (general, moral and aesthetic) of children and youth. The aggressiveness of media in the presentment of contents as progressive and “without alternative” often results in the acceptance of risk behaviour which is usually different from “traditional” educational values. Media literacy helps children and youth develop the ability to handle media successfully and to critically select information they receive on daily basis. This is why the authors are the opinion that the media literacy of children and youth is very important part of lifelong learning and should be started at a young age, but it is also important to educate their parents and teachers wherein school, as an institution for education, and contemporary educational (pedagogical) science play an important role. 
 
Keywords: media and manipulation, educational values, commercialization of childhood, media literacy, school and family.
 
Ph.D. Jasminka Zloković, Ph.D. Anita Klapan, Siniša Kušić