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研究:电视可能会抑制婴儿的语言发展

(2009-06-02 21:24:51)
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教育

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分类: 中外教育比较参考

研究:电视可能会抑制婴儿的语言发展

简介

在这个繁忙的世界,父母们往往不得不妥协和避让一部分教育下一代的责任,将他们交给其他的人或其他的工具比如电视,但最近研究发现经常看电视,或者仅仅开着电视,都可能会阻碍儿童的语言发展。

 

 

虽然大部分小孩的父母都不愿意承认,但没什么其他东西像电视这样占据小孩子的时间了。很不幸的是,科学研究表明利用显像管电视作为小孩的“保姆”要付出代价:孩子们坐在电视机前的时间越长,越容易影响他们的社会交往、语言和认知能力的发展。最新的研究发现收看电视会导致孩子们学习新单词、新对话、新游戏和其他与别人交流技巧这些可能性的降低。

周一发表在《儿科和青春期医学档案》上的新的研究在介绍一种新视角的同时也为这一发现增加了进一步的证据。许多研究表明,电视通过抑制青少年与其他人的交流从而阻碍其学习能力的发展,根据华盛顿大学的儿科迪米特里.克里斯塔基斯博士的研究,如果父母也沉迷于看电视,可能会加剧这种效应。

克里斯塔基斯报告说,当婴儿被出现在电视上的节目画面牢牢吸引时,他们的父母同样也可能会分心,这限制了他们与孩子的交流。这是一个三方面的互动关系,电视影响儿童和他们的父母,父母的脱节进一步损害到自己的孩子。第一次,克里斯塔基斯的小组甚至精确量化收看电视到底在何种程度上破坏亲子之间的沟通,这项新的研究发现:电视每打开一小时,婴儿从成人听到的单词少于770个。孩子与父母间的谈话减少了15%,同时孩子总的发声量也减少。

为了记录每个“声音事件”,克里斯塔基斯为年龄在2个月至4年的每一个婴儿和儿童配备了寻呼机大小的录音机,将其放在他们胸前,在每天16小时的时间内记录婴儿或成人的任何一个声音。每个孩子在每个月随机选择一天进行声音记录,为期两年。此外,当电视机被打开时,录音机将在婴儿的听力所及范围收录声音。然后由专门设计的软件编码电视打开和关闭时搜集到的声音。

克里斯塔基斯说,不管是屏幕上在放什么节目——无论是婴儿性的内容或面向成年人——电视的性质是一种消极的媒介,它阻碍了丰富的社会互动。即使在家长和孩子们在看电视时积极互动,但只要电视打开,无论是几分钟或者几小时,其净效果都是使得发声行为减少。研究发现,平均而言,当电视打开时,年轻人比他们进行积极社会互动时花更多的时间处于沉默和孤独状态。“至少,这个发现可以使父母们暂停”克里斯塔基斯说,值得注意的是,无论有没有人在收看,30%的美国的主妇们都习惯一整天将电视打开。

当涉及到那些名义上为了提高婴幼儿的发展而销售的DVD和录影带时这个现象尤其如此;很多提议都鼓励家长和孩子在观看节目时进行接触和互相交流。但新的研究表明这具有相反的效果:无论节目是什么,最终结果是电视的噪音抑制了口头交流。在早先的工作中,克里斯塔基斯也证明,婴儿DVD和录影带甚至可能导致婴幼儿语言习得的降低。这就是为什么美国儿科学术委员会不鼓励2岁以下的儿童看电视的部分原因。

然而,这项研究的一个主要弱点在于它不能确定具体的节目内容和婴儿发展之间的联系。因为录音机记录的只有声音而没有相关的电视节目内容,克里斯塔基斯不能肯定针对孩子的电视节目是否可以真正引导孩子们发声、说话和与他们的父母进行更多交流。“有可能可以在电视上放针对儿童的节目,真正提高儿童的口头表达,”克里斯塔基斯说。

但是,鉴于他以前在这个问题上的研究发现,他的直觉是,电视也许不是促进父母和孩子之间真正互动关系的理想媒介。他认为,如果是,那么无论是在前景或背景噪音,开着电视的净影响将是丰富的,将导致更持续的交流和对话。

看起来,没什么可以打败最基本的感情纽带形式——一个很好的老式的一对一的“讨论会”,即便你交换的只是那些喁喁细语和咯咯声。

Study: TV May Inhibit Babies' Language Development

As most parents of small children will reluctantly admit, nothing can occupy a child quite like television. Unfortunately, the scientific evidence suggests that using the boob tube as a babysitter has its price: the more time babies spend sitting in front of the screen, the more their social, cognitive and language development may suffer. Recent studies show that TV-viewing tends to decrease babies' likelihood of learning new words, talking, playing and otherwise interacting with others.

A new study published Monday in the Archive of Pediatrics and Adolescent Medicine adds to that evidence while introducing an intriguing new perspective. Many studies have suggested that television impedes learning by inhibiting youngsters' ability to interact with others, and according to Dr. Dimitri Christakis, a University of Washington pediatrician, that effect may be compounded when parents get drawn into TV-watching too.

 

Christakis reports that when babies get caught up with what's playing on television, their parents are equally likely to get distracted, which limits their exchanges with their kids. It's a three-way interaction, with TV affecting both children and their parents, and the parents' detachment further impairing their children. For the first time, Christakis' group even quantified exactly the degree to which TV-viewing can cripple parent-child communication: for every hour a television was turned on, babies heard 770 fewer words from an adult, the new study found. Conversational exchanges between baby and parent dropped 15%, as did the overall number of vocalizations made by children.

 

To document each "vocal event," Christakis outfitted 329 babies and children, ages 2 months to 4 years, with pager-sized recorders on their chests that recorded every audible sound either the baby or any adult made over a 16-hour period. Each child wore the monitor for one randomly assigned day a month for up to two years. In addition, the recorder captured sound from a television whenever it was turned on within earshot of the baby. Specially designed software then coded all audible sounds made or heard when the TV was both on and off.

Christakis argues that regardless of what is playing on the screen — whether it's baby-friendly content or shows geared toward adults — television by nature is a passive medium that hampers rich social interaction. Even when parents and children interacted actively while watching TV together, the net effect of having it turned on, for a few minutes or hours, was a drop in vocalizations. On average, the study found, when the TV is switched on, youngsters spend more time in silence and solitude than they do in active social interaction. "At minimum, the findings should give parents pause," says Christakis, noting that in 30% of American households, the television is on most of the day, regardless of whether anyone is watching.

 

That's especially true when it comes to DVDs and videos marketed to enhance infant development; many claim to work by encouraging parents and babies to engage and interact with each other as they watch. But the new study shows the opposite effect: whatever the programming, the ultimate outcome of television noise is to inhibit verbal exchanges. In earlier work, Christakis also documented that baby DVDs and videos may even contribute to a drop in language acquisition in infants. That's partly why the American Academy of Pediatrics discourages television-watching for babies under 2.

 

One major weakness of the study, however, is that it fails to determine a specific association between programming content and infant development. Because the recorder documented only the sound of the television and not the content of what was playing, Christakis can't say for sure whether kid-targeted programming could actually lead the youngsters to vocalize, talk and interact with their parents more. "It is possible to put on the TV and really engage with a child verbally," says Christakis.

 

But given his previous findings on the issue, his hunch is that television probably isn't the ideal medium for promoting real interaction between parent and child. If it were, he argues, then the net effect of having the TV on, whether in the foreground or in the background as noise, would have been richer and would have led to more sustained exchanges and conversations.

 

Nothing, it seems, beats the most basic form of bonding — a good old-fashioned one-on-one powwow, even if you're only trading coos and gurgles.

 

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