Strouse’s research focused on the learning behavior of toddlers during screen time. In her experiment, 88 toddlers at age 30-months learned about new words for objects via either video chat (e.g., Skype or Facetime) or a prerecorded video, where the parents either participated with the child or sat out of their view. The child then was tested on their learning with real versions of the objects they saw in the video.

Studying the best contexts for learning, Strouse discovered that children learned best when they had parental involvement while engaging in the video. She argues that even when participating in active video chat, toddlers “need that same parental participation in order to receive the most out of video learning."

This research supports the new guidelines by the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) who stated that it is critical that screen time for children as young as 18 months “be high-quality programming, such as the content offered by Sesame Workshop and PBS.”

Read Strouse’s full research article.

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