Talking to your toddler found to be better for his development than educational TV and DVDs
The best way to help your toddler learn is to talk to him
Educational DVDs may not educate your toddler at all, according to a new study. The findings back up previous research that suggests baby learning DVDs are no substitute for a little one’s interaction with his parents.
The study from the US, published in the journal Psychology Science looked tested the response of 72 infants between the ages of 12 and 18 months. They were split into groups with one group watching the DVD unaccompanied and one under supervision. The control groups were split into those whose parents actively attempted to teach their babies the words from the DVD and those who did not change their routines.
After a month, all the babies had their language skills tested. Researchers found that those regularly watching the DVD had no significant differences in their vocab than those who didn’t.
The researchers suggested that what parents assume babies learn from the DVDs are actually normal development they would have learnt anyway.
“If you want to show your infant baby videos, that’s fine. Just don’t expect the child to learn a great deal from it,” said lead author Judy DeLoache from the University of Virginia.
“Your children are going to learn language anyway,” she added, explaining the best way to teach them is simply to talk to them. However, if you do find your baby responds well to a particular DVD, as all babies are different and there’s no harm letting him occasionally watch his favourites with you by his side.