Television, video games, and on-line media are now a fact of life for our children, whose developing minds and bodies are particularly vulnerable to their power. This vulnerability has sparked a national debate, and parents and educators have joined forces to address the benefits and drawbacks of visual media. In Screen Smarts, Gloria DeGaetano, a nationally recognized expert on mass media and children, argues that while these technologies are often overused, when used consciously and purposefully, they can not only support children's development but enhance it as well. This book addresses all the vital media-related issues for children through the age of fourteen and offers proactive strategies for supporting children's optimal development in a media age. It is sure to be the definitive sourcebook on media literacy for a long time to come.