Friday, July 18, 2008

Background TV can damage small children

An article I translated from the Swedish newspaper 'Aftonbladet.' You can read the full article here (in Swedish of course!) Please forgive me for any weird grammar....... I just did it for practice and without the use of a dictionary.....

Foto: Katrin Jakobsen

New study: TV Can damage children’s development
When small children play with a TV on in the room it interrupts their concentration. Interrupted play can lead to children not developing to their full potential. This is the result of a new American study.
Showing adult programs in the same room that small children play can be a threat to the children’s development. Earlier, it was believed that TV didn’t affect children unless they watched it. But now researchers from the University of Massachusetts have actually studied how very small children react when they play in a room that has a TV on, writes Dagens Nyheter (another Swedish newspaper).
The sound and lights cause interruptions
The children, aged between one and three, were studied as they played in a room with a TV showing the program Jeopardy. They were also studied playing in the same room but with the TV off. When the TV was on, the sound and light flicker made the children stop their play more often to glance at the TV even though they were not watching the program. Interruption of play can lead to children developing concentration problems, say the researchers, as the ability to concentrate is developed in the early years. This research has led them to warn against the dangers of leaving a TV on in the background at home when there are small children around.
On the other hand the researches point out that the study applies only when the TV program shown is meant for a mature audience. To let children see appropriate children’s programming may have a different effect.

(This is me...) Either way - having the TV on can't be good! I'm currently limiting Missy Moo to about 30 mins a day - Playschool on the ABC as she loves it, it is educational and I can have a shower etc without having to worry about her climbing the couch, playing superman and breaking her neck while unsupervised! It is the only TV program that she will actually sit and watch. She dances and claps to the songs and laughs when they show footage of animals. (Yep, I spy on her when I've finished my shower : )