Photo: via Manoush Zomorodi
In the 1960s, behavioural scientists Betty Hart and Todd Risley found through research that children of wealthy parents tended to have better reading comprehension than their peers with lower-income parents, because wealthy parents talked to their children more.But that advantage may soon be flipped on its head, as technology consumes the attention of wealthy parents, who can afford it, and their children.
In The Good School: How Smart Parents Get Their Kids the Education They Deserve, journalist Peg Tyre writes about how children now play on the screens of iPhones and iPads while their parents send a few dozen text messages and work related e-mails, therefore inhibiting the conversations between parent and child.
Research shows that the more a child is spoken to, the better his or her reading comprehension. So in short, playing with your Blackberry instead of talking to your child can put your child at a disadvantage in terms of learning to read.
“I hate Angry Birds,” Tyre said of the popular iPhone game. “There’s no reason children should be playing it. … I do very much worry, knowing what we know about language development and children being dependent on hearing and speaking words to expand vocabulary that playing with all these devices will inhibit that.”
“Handing kids the Angry Birds game to keep them quiet, I’m not sure people understand what’s truly being lost there,” Tyre said.
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