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article imageStudy shows educational DVDs do not expand infant vocabulary

By Gordon K. Chan     Mar 15, 2010 in Science
Infant language learning does not appear to improve after exposure to educational videos. Experts encourage parents to be cautious of educational companies that claim their products can augment a young child's language development.
Parents who are keen on exposing their infant to media rich images may not be getting the advertised benefit.
The University of California released a study in a Science Daily report that examined language learning of children ages 2 and younger who were exposed to a daily 2 hour regimen of educational products.
Claims from manufacturers that media products can accelerate an infants language ability appear to be "unsubstantiated".
Children were exposed to six weeks of testing and "no evidence" of learning had occurred amongst the children who watched these videos.
In fact, scientists believe that early viewing of baby DVDs may hinder or "impair language development".
One explanation was that parents who used such products may over-rely on the infant directed media and not have the irreplaceable high quality interaction with their children.
A young child undergoes many important stages of development, including their sensory systems, their ability to interpret symbols and assigning meaning to information that they see around them.
Simply stated, a child of 12-24 months is too young to acquire a rich vocabulary, and DVDs should be re-considered as age-specific research continues as to how children can benefit from these products.
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