Article

Personalized interactive characters for toddlers' learning of seriation from a video presentation

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Abstract

Children's media is rooted in relationships with onscreen characters. In this study, 18-month-old toddlers were initially exposed to one of two unfamiliar interactive media characters for 3 months. Conditions varied whether the character was personalized to them or not. At age 21 months, toddlers were tested on a seriation task that was presented onscreen by the character and compared to the performance of a 21-month-old control group who did not view a video demonstration (total N = 48). Toddlers learned significantly more from the personalized character, but not from the non-personalized character, when compared to the control group. Children in the personalized condition also increased in parasocial, nurturing behaviors directed at the character during play sessions, and these scores were linked to better seriation performance. The results suggest an important role for social relationships with interactive characters to teach early seriation skills.

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... Given the near half-century of research that has demonstrated successful learning from educational preschool television programming (e.g., Fisch & Truglio, 2001), research has begun to evaluate which features can support infant and toddler learning from screen presentations. To date, researchers have demonstrated that social factors including character famil-iarity (Calvert, Richards, & Kent, 2014;Gola, Richards, Lauricella, & Calvert, 2013;Lauricella, Gola, & Calvert, 2011), social contingency (Krcmar, 2010;Troseth, Saylor, & Archer, 2006), and observation of other's social interaction (O'Doherty et al., 2011) can help infants and toddlers overcome the transfer deficit. The intent of this study is to assess the effect of interactive eye gaze and language, social features that are common in children's educational television programs (e.g., Dora the Explorer), on toddlers learning from a video presentation. ...
... Despite the questions remaining about why young children face a deficit in learning from screen media, researchers have begun to examine specific features and instances in which this transfer deficit effect can be ameliorated. Recent research demonstrates that factors related to the presentation of the media content, such as repetition (Barr, Muentener, Garcia, Fujimoto, & Chavez, 2007), language prompts (Barr & Wyss, 2008;Barr, 2010;Seehagen & Herbert, 2010), use of closedcircuit television (Troseth, 2003a), and the meaningfulness or the social contingency of the character (Calvert et al., 2014;Gola et al., 2013;Krcmar, 2010;Lauricella et al., 2011;Troseth et al., 2006) can improve young children's learning from video. Furthermore, factors related to the child, specifically age (Barr & Hayne, 1999) and experience using television as a source of information (Troseth, 2003b) also play a role in children's successful learning from a video. ...
... This study adds to the growing body of research that demonstrates that under certain circumstances, infants and toddlers can in fact learn from a screen presentation (e.g., Barr & Hayne, 1999;Barr & Wyss, 2008;Barr et al., 2007;Calvert et al., 2014;Gola et al., 2013;Lauricella et al., 2011); it also demonstrates that toddlers can learn equally well from a live and screen presentation with matched language and gaze cues. Given previous research, we discuss the ways in which the matching of pedagogical cues may have influenced toddler learning. ...
... In addition, many young children develop one-way emotionally-tinged relationships, called parasocial relationships, with their favorite media characters. Parasocial relationships with familiar media figures can promote learning from media content, such as improving young children's math skills (Calvert, Richards, & Kent, 2014;Gola, Richards, Lauricella, & Calvert, 2013). Overall, children's feelings of attachment, friendship, and social realism towards media characters emerge as stable dimensions that define these relationships (Aguiar, Richards, Bond, Brunick, & Calvert, 2019;Richards & Calvert, 2016). ...
... Overall, children's feelings of attachment, friendship, and social realism towards media characters emerge as stable dimensions that define these relationships (Aguiar, Richards, Bond, Brunick, & Calvert, 2019;Richards & Calvert, 2016). For instance, preschoolers are likely to experience their favorite media characters as real (Aguiar et al., 2019;Richards & Calvert, 2016) and engage in positive social behaviors towards them, such as nurturing stuffed animal replicas of the character (Calvert et al., 2014). ...
... Social realism has been shown to be an important factor for young children developing parasocial relationships with familiar media figures (Richards & Calvert, 2016). Furthermore, children show prosocial behaviors towards the characters with whom they develop positive social attachments (Calvert et al., 2014). By enhancing the realism of a socially contingent and familiar character like Grover, VR could make a character seem more similar to a real-world friend compared with seeing that character on TV. ...
Article
We compared the effects of different immersive technologies on four- to six-year-olds' inhibitory control skills, social compliance (i.e., walking upon request), and sharing (i.e., physical stickers) with a children's media character (Grover from Sesame Street©). Children (N = 52) completed an inhibitory control task, Simon Says, with Grover either via TV or VR. Children using VR were less likely to suppress a dominant motoric response during Simon Says (i.e., not imitating Grover's actions at the appropriate time) compared to children using TV. More children in the VR condition approached Grover, and they shared a greater number of stickers with Grover compared to the TV condition (among those that shared). There were no differences between conditions for emotional or physical distress or children's enjoyment of the experience. These preliminary findings suggest that VR may elicit differential cognitive and social responses compared to less immersive technology.
... Only a few studies have examined the interaction between social cognition -in the form of parasocial relationships with media characters -and children's learning in general (Lauricella, Gola, & Calvert, 2011;;Richert, Robb, & Smith, 2011) and STEM learning more specifically (Calvert, Richards, & Kent, 2014;. Gola, Richards, Lauricella, & Calvert, 2013). ...
... Logical next steps have been to extend this work by enhancing the effect of parasocial relationships on children's learning through interactivity with characters. To this end, Calvert, Richards, and Kent (2014) have used programmable plush toys (e.g., Leap Frog's Scout & Violet) to examine interactivity through character personalization (e.g., having favorite foods and activities or not). Eighteen-month old children were familiarized with either Scout or Violet for three months. ...
Technical Report
Full-text available
American students under-perform in the domains of mathematics and science, undermining the intellectual and economic potential of future generations. Researchers have proposed that meaningful exposure to science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) concepts through mass media and interactive technology platforms may augment learning in young children. Consequently, leading experts in the fields of communications and media studies, cognitive and developmental psychology, computer science, human development, and education gathered at Northwestern University in June 2014 to discuss findings across these fields that can contribute to the debates about children’s STEM learning through interactive media and to formulate a series of research projects that might address these complex issues. This report highlights key points of discussion with the hope of catalyzing further discussion, inquiry, and research.
... Mouse or Frozen's Elsa and Anna (Richards & Calvert, 2017). These animated characters are portrayed and often act human-like; for example, they walk upright, talk, have feelings, and have adventures with friends and family (Calvert, 2017;Calvert, Richards, & Kent, 2014). ...
... PSRs with media characters develop through experiences with tangible human-like plush toys and interactive toys as well as by observing the characters in videos (Calvert, 2015;Calvert et al., 2014;Gola, Richards, Lauricella, & Calvert, 2013). More specifically, children can play with embodied characters in the form of toys, which can provide opportunities for nurturing the characters, thereby leading to the development of PSRs with the characters across physical and virtual settings Gola et al., 2013). ...
Article
Full-text available
With the rise of smart devices in the 21st century, children are increasingly engaged in socially contingent interactions with conversational agents such as Alexa, Google Assistant, and Siri. Using an online parent survey, young children's verbal interactions (parasocial interactions) and emotional relationships (parasocial relationships) with conversational agents were examined in a naturalistic study. A total of 92 parents responded to the survey, 70 of whom qualified because they had a conversational agent. Exploratory and confirmatory factor analyses of emotional parasocial relationships with conversational agents in a subset of this sample (n = 58, mchild age = 5.54 years, age range 3–10, 33 females) revealed three dimensions: attachment, personification, and social realism. These dimensions are consistent with children's parasocial relationships with media characters. The relation between parasocial verbal interactions and emotional parasocial relationships with conversational agents was bidirectional. The results indicate that children develop close emotional ties with artificial beings, treating them as human-like entities with feelings and for whom they have feelings. Implications for interactions with artificial life as children's trusted social partners are considered.
... With the increasing proliferation of mobile and tablet technologies there is considerable interest in the potential of iPads to support young children's learning and exploration (Couse & Chen, 2010;Fagan & Coutts 2012, Hatherly & Chapman, 2014Kucirkova, Messer, Sheehy, & Fernández Panadero, 2014;Khoo, Merry, Nguyen, Bennett, & MacMillan, 2014 ;Verenikina & Kervin, 2011). There are some who consider the iPad to be a "game changer", with Brown-Martin (2010) going to the extent of coining the term "iPadagogy" to introduce the range of teaching approaches attempting to incorporate iPads. ...
... This is important because access to and use of technologies alone does not ensure quality educational experiences for children (An, Wilder, & Lim, 2011). The dynamic consideration of the ways people take up technology tools to serve particular goals that may not be possible without the use of the tool closely aligns with sociocultural ideas (see Carr, 2001b) and is becoming imperative as digital technologies become increasingly helping them to make sense of what they see on the screen and what they know (Calvert, Richards, & Kent, 2014). Jenkins et al. (2006, p. 11) aptly argue that: the focus on negative effects of media consumption offers an incomplete picture. ...
Article
Full-text available
This article reports on a qualitative study exploring the extent to which the Apple iPad can be used to support assessment in an early childhood education (ECE) context. It is part of wider project exploring the educational affordances of the iPad in one ECE context from the perspectives of teachers, parents, and young children. Observations focused on interactions between an early childhood teacher and children as they were using an iPad and teacher interviews informed the study. The findings highlight the potential of using iPads to capture and record young children’s voices in their assessment practice. Teacher recognition and understanding of the opportunities iPads offer, and their deliberate incorporation of these opportunities, can support young children’s emerging learning and interests. Implications are provided for practitioners interested in investigating the iPad’s use to foster meaningful, relevant, and authentic assessment practices for and with young children.
... Building parasocial relationships with TV or video characters (ie, the perceived relationship that audience members develop with characters who speak to them, such as Elmo or Dora) also has been shown to improve toddlers' learning. Calvert et al 25 showed that, after 3 months of playing with a personalized interactive toy, 21-month-olds could learn how to stack cups from a video demonstration by the same character, suggesting that building an emotional bond with an on-screen character improves learning potential. However, a primary limitation of such experimental studies is that they do not examine how repeated media use displaces other activities, and they do not examine longer-term outcomes. ...
... However, a primary limitation of such experimental studies is that they do not examine how repeated media use displaces other activities, and they do not examine longer-term outcomes. For example, in the study by Calvert and colleagues, 25 children randomly assigned to the group that did not receive the interactive toy for 3 months actually scored better in terms of language development at 21 months of age. ...
Article
Today's children and adolescents are immersed in both traditional and new forms of digital media. Research on traditional media, such as television, has identified health concerns and negative outcomes that correlate with the duration and content of viewing. Over the past decade, the use of digital media, including interactive and social media, has grown, and research evidence suggests that these newer media offer both benefits and risks to the health of children and teenagers. Evidence-based benefits identified from the use of digital and social media include early learning, exposure to new ideas and knowledge, increased opportunities for social contact and support, and new opportunities to access health promotion messages and information. Risks of such media include negative health effects on sleep, attention, and learning; a higher incidence of obesity and depression; exposure to inaccurate, inappropriate, or unsafe content and contacts; and compromised privacy and confidentiality. This technical report reviews the literature regarding these opportunities and risks, framed around clinical questions, for children from birth to adulthood. To promote health and wellness in children and adolescents, it is important to maintain adequate physical activity, healthy nutrition, good sleep hygiene, and a nurturing social environment. A healthy Family Media Use Plan (www.healthychildren. org/MediaUsePlan) that is individualized for a specific child, teenager, or family can identify an appropriate balance between screen time/online time and other activities, set boundaries for accessing content, guide displays of personal information, encourage age-appropriate critical thinking and digital literacy, and support open family communication and implementation of consistent rules about media use.
... Results were complemented by Gola, Richards, Lauricella, and Calvert (2013) who pointed out that children's learning performance is increased from unknown personae over time, because of an emotional bond with these figures. In addition, Calvert, Richards, and Kent (2014) found that 18 month old children learn better with personalized personae. Personalization was operationalized through same sex, favorites (e.g., food, favorite song) and direct addressing by their names. ...
... Previous studies are either concerned with PSR (e.g. Calvert et al., 2014) or have not yet been thoroughly tested empirically (Brownlow, 2015). Nevertheless, results which are related to this topic (Schroeder et al., 2013) lead to the adoption of a positive impact from parasocial processes on learning. ...
Article
Numerous studies were conducted to investigate how recipients are affected by the miscellaneous characters in multimedia. However, there is a lack of research concerning the connection between parasocial processes and learning performances. This study aims to investigate the influence of addressing (as a social encounter of parasocial interaction) on learning performance in an educational video. Addressing was operationalized by manipulating proximity (near vs. far) and orientation (frontal, vs. lateral) of a presented lecturer. We conducted an experiment with 88 participants who were randomly assigned to one of the four experimental groups. Results revealed a large significant orientation effect for retention performance with higher learning outcomes for frontal orientation. Proximity did not significantly influence learning outcomes. Results were interpreted suggesting perceived parasocial interaction which was enhanced in the frontal condition. Parasocial interaction might lead to deeper cognitive processing and affective states which are beneficial for learning. The findings of this study show that learning is fostered by personae in educational learning environments by giving learners the impression to be addressed directly through eye contact.
... Interactive reading is expected to stimulate imitation of character poses from the book, such as mimicking to be strong or eating carrots just like the characters (De Droog et al., 2014). Puppets may further stimulate this type of character imitation, because children more easily imitate characters that come across as real due to their personalized responses (Bond & Calvert, 2014;Calvert, Richards, & Kent, 2014). ...
... Specifically, in line with Hypothesis 5, the impact of interactive reading on consumption via character imitation was moderated by puppet use. With the puppet being more responsive in the interactive reading condition (i.e., asking the questions to the children and praising their answers) than in the passive reading condition, this finding seems to support previous research indicating that children imitate responsive characters more easily than non-responsive characters (Bond & Calvert, 2014;Calvert et al., 2014). Another reason for the impact of puppet use could be that toddlers were given the opportunity to feed the puppet a plush carrot, stimulating toddlers to imitate the behavior (i.e., putting the plush or a fictitious carrot in their own mouth), resulting in foodrelated poses. ...
Article
Picture books with characters that promote healthy eating are increasingly being used to make this behavior more attractive. The first aim of this study was to investigate whether the effect of vegetable-promoting picture books on toddlers' vegetable consumption differed according to the reading style and the use of a hand puppet during reading. The second aim was to investigate whether these effects were mediated by toddlers’ narrative involvement and character imitation. In a 2 (reading style: interactive vs. passive) x 2 (puppet use: with vs. without puppet) between-subjects design, 163 toddlers (2–3 years) were randomly assigned to one of the four reading conditions. The story was about a rabbit that loves to eat carrots. After the fourth reading day, the eating task was conducted in which children could eat freely from four different snacks, including carrots. The main finding was that interactive reading produced the greatest carrot consumption. The explanation for this effect was that interactive reading stimulated toddlers to imitate poses of the book characters, even more when interactive reading was supported by the use of a hand puppet. The findings underline that young children should be actively involved with health interventions in order for them to be effective.
... Trying to keep track of social obligations is difficult, but equally challenging is placating difficult or demanding agents (i.e., most spirits). There is also evidence now from parasocial relationship research that one-way social relationships with nonhumans (e.g., kids befriending cartoon characters and toys) can improve general cognitive skills (Calvert, Richards, and Kent 2014). Parasocial bonding is a powerful motivator for acquiring information and skills, not to mention emotional satisfactions (Choi 2017;Derrick, Gabriel, and Tippins 2008;Gannon 2018). ...
Article
A mythopoetic paradigm or perspective sees the world primarily as a dramatic story of competing personal intentions, rather than a system of objective impersonal laws. Asma (2017) argued that our contemporary imaginative cognition is evolutionarily conserved-it has structural and functional similarities to premodern Homo sapiens’s cognition. This article will (i) outline the essential features of mythopoetic cognition or adaptive imagination, (ii) delineate the adaptive sociocultural advantages of mythopoetic cognition, (iii) explain the phylogenetic and ontogenetic mechanisms that give rise to human mythopoetic mind (i.e., genetically endowed simulation and associational systems that underwrite diverse symbolic systems), (iv) show how mythopoetic cognition challeng­es contemporary trends in cognitive science and philosophy, and (v) recognize and outline empirical approaches for a new cognitive science of the imagination.
... Recent studies have found that anthropomorphism is an important social cue that promotes learning processes (Schneider et al., 2018). Especially in animated audiovisual productions for early-childhood education, anthropomorphism might be an important design factor (Calvert, Richards, & Kent, 2014). ...
Article
Social entities are implemented within educational videos in order to create a stimulating learning environment that will serve for social identification and knowledge transfer. In two experiments performed for this study, university students watched an instructional video about multiple sclerosis (experiment 1) or amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (experiment 2). In both experiments, the lecturer's presentation was manipulated in terms of addressing (frontal versus lateral) and dress style (professional versus non-professional). The results revealed that learners who watched the videos where the frontal addressing style was used outperformed those who watched the video where the lateral addressing style was used. The professional dress style was only beneficial for retention performance in the condition where the frontal addressing style was used. The frontal addressing style and the professional dress style were also found to be beneficial in terms of cognitive load reduction and in enhancing parasocial processes.
... For example, a child can practice addition with the toy, which will provide subsequent questions based on the child's responses. Children's tendency to develop close "parasocial relationships" with virtual characters may be heightened when their toys respond to them (Calvert, Richards, & Kent, 2014); research will be needed to determine if interacting with this new kind of social partner affects development. ...
Article
Full-text available
Since early in the development of children’s television, research has informed policy and practice involving young children’s media use. To increase the likelihood that new media support children’s development, research in the coming decade must stay current with advancing technology. With the advent of various forms of interactive digital media, key research questions involve social and physical interactivity. How should adults appropriately support children’s use of different kinds of media to promote children’s creativity, learning, and development? How does co-viewing (social interaction) overlap with and differ from contingency built into the medium itself? When a device interacts, does that change the kind of support required of a co-viewing adult, or eliminate the need for such support? How does the introduction of new technology impact the lives of families? Issues related to video chat, touchscreen and motion capture technology, artificial intelligence, and electronic books and games are discussed.
... In both games, Murray is introduced as a zookeeper who needs help with the zoo animals. Since character interaction can have great effects on children's experiences with a program (Calvert, Richards, & Kent, 2014;Gola, Richards, Lauricella, & Calvert, 2013;Hoffner, 1996;Wainwright & Linebarger, 2007), we felt it important to keep the main character consistent across conditions. Second, in both games, children are interacting with animals (either measuring or cleaning them), keeping the secondary characters in the game consistent as well. ...
... Toddler that was shown the character video would personalize the character modeled. 17,18 Video was one of media recommended for toilet training. 19 Based on these descriptions, the researcher conducted this study in order to determine the effect of video modeling to increase toileting skills at toddler in Purwokerto.. ...
... Nevertheless, recent studies have begun to examine how children construct a range of positive and negative relationships through multiple media forms and both friendly and antagonistic connections with characters (Jennings & Alper). A growing body of research also suggests that personalized and interactive relationships with characters may aid children in learning, (Calvert, Richards, & Kent, 2014;Gola, Richards, Lauricella, & Calvert, 2013 Marilyn: I honestly love the fact that the… I just love about Hunger Games and Divergent, I love that the main characters were women and they were showing us these strong and independent women who like really didn't depend on anybody and they, they kind of did their thing. I really like that. ...
Article
While children’s and young adult literature has always been a product marketed and sold for profit, the past two decades have seen a dramatic upsurge in young adult literature that is transmediated and commercially “branded” (Sekeres, 2009), positioning these books as only one product of many sold in a franchise. Despite the popularity of branded young adult fiction, little is known about how adolescent readers are navigating and valuing the myriad commercial products that are part of their reading experiences. The growing popularity of young adult literature, its increasing commodification as branded fiction, and concomitant concerns about its diminishing literary quality and implicit consumerist socialization of youth make the present an especially important moment to learn more about the literacy practices of adolescents engaging with branded young adult fiction. This dissertation study investigated how a group of Hispanic youth read between and across print, media, and material branded young adult fiction texts, critically analyzing how participants made sense of these texts through social interactions and considering the ethical and political implications of their engagement in the literature. Drawing from intersectional, feminist research traditions, this qualitative study is grounded in a conceptual framework of critical, sociocultural perspectives of literacy, resource orientations toward youth culture and identity, and transactional theories of reader response. Eleven ninth grade students participated in a weekly afterschool group in which they collectively engaged in an inquiry into branded young adult fiction. Additional data were collected through focus groups, semi-structured interviews, participant observation, survey, and artifact analysis. This research provides insight into possibilities for branded young adult fiction to occupy multiple and contradictory spaces in adolescents’ lived worlds. Participants’ transactions with these texts reflected the ambiguous positioning of print novels within franchises, contested traditional notions of reader, author, and interpretive authority, and suggested pedagogical opportunities for conceptualizing reading and reader response as embodied and materially situated. As participants engaged with branded fiction, their negotiations offer new understandings of the agency enacted by youth as they, through their entanglement with popular culture and prevailing consumerist forces, take critical positions, audition different identities, and create and inhabit multiple worlds.
... Embodied characters and settings that present socially contingent through verbal (e.g., asking questions) and non-verbal responses (e.g., direct eye contact, proximity) influenced children's social cognition and behaviors. For example, many children develop a one-way emotionally-tinged attachment with their favorite media characters, which could be seen as parasocial relationships [55], [56]. Therefore, VR can present social simulations to practice prosocial behavior, empathy, and perspective-taking by creating real-world environments and drawing children's attention to virtual characters. ...
Conference Paper
Full-text available
Children who lack social capacities and interactive abilities can be classified as having "social skills deficits." Children with these symptoms can also meet the criteria for multiple mental health diagnoses, e.g., social anxiety disorder (SAD), social phobia, ADHD, and Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD). With an ever-growing research base of technology applied in clinical psychology, it is crucial to convert traditional therapeutic thinking to a more cross-sectional perspective-if effective technological interventions are to be used in an inclusive manner in the classrooms. Based on this reflection, we present a systematic scoped review for children with social skills deficits, focusing on early interventions using virtual reality (VR) technology and the feasibility and efficacy of social skills improvement. Efficacious intervention strategies are presented for individuals with particular disorders rather than developing and implementing the intervention for the progress and well-being of multiple clinical groups with similar symptoms. The highlight of these research findings is that VR can be applied to psychological research and clinical usage within specific contexts. It is also a promising tool for social skills training.
... Based on the items in this factor, Calvert (2016, 2017) describe human-like needs as the attribution of specific human-like functions, such as having psychological needs and desires (in parent reports), and having biological functions, such as needing to eat and sleep (child reports). In behavioral observations of young children's PSRs, the attribution of human-like needs is found in the nurturing behaviors children engage in with plush toy versions of a favorite media character, including feeding and putting the toy version of a favorite media character to bed (Calvert, Richards, & Kent, 2014;Gola, Richards, Lauricella, & Calvert, 2013). For young children, engaging in nurturing behaviors with plush toy media characters, a behavioral indicator of early PSRs, is associated with better subsequent learning of math concepts when these media characters present academic lessons onscreen Gola et al., 2013). ...
Article
Full-text available
Parent report measures indicate that young children’s parasocial relationships (PSRs) are multidimensional constructs consisting of dimensions such as social realism, attachment and character personification, and human-like needs. However, little is known about how parent perceptions of these dimensions evolve as children mature and form new PSRs. In this 3-year follow-up study, parents (N = 156) from two previous studies were recontacted, and they provided updated information about their children’s PSRs in an online questionnaire. A principal components analysis revealed that the dimensions of social realism, attachment and character personification, and human-like needs reemerged when children were approximately 6- to 8-years-old and had formed new or retained previous relationships with favorite media characters. A new dimension of character qualities also emerged, paralleling the developmental changes that occur in children’s real friendships. These results clarify parent reports of the dimensions that comprise children’s PSRs and provide descriptive information about the ways in which parent perceptions of children’s PSRs shift as their children mature.
... A third study involving toddlers under 2 years of age found that familiar media characters can convey personalized messages to promote early learning experiences compared with non-personalized messages or no characters (111). Future research is needed to understand the shopping and eating experiences of children in food-retail and restaurant settings. ...
Article
Full-text available
Reducing the extent and persuasive power of marketing unhealthy foods to children worldwide are important obesity prevention goals. Research is limited to understand how brand mascots and cartoon media characters influence children's diet. We conducted a systematic review of five electronic databases (2000-2014) to identify experimental studies that measured how food companies' mascots and entertainment companies' media characters influence up to 12 diet-related cognitive, behavioural and health outcomes for children under 12 years. Eleven studies met the inclusion criteria. Studies used 21 unique popular media characters, but no brand mascots. Results suggest that cartoon media character branding can positively increase children's fruit or vegetable intake compared with no character branding. However, familiar media character branding is a more powerful influence on children's food preferences, choices and intake, especially for energy-dense and nutrient-poor foods (e.g. cookies, candy or chocolate) compared with fruits or vegetables. Future research should use a theoretically grounded conceptual model and larger and more diverse samples across settings to produce stronger findings for mediating and moderating factors. Future research can be used to inform the deliberations of policymakers, practitioners and advocates regarding how media character marketing should be used to support healthy food environments for children. © 2014 The Authors. Obesity Reviews published by John Wiley & Sons Ltd on behalf of World Obesity.
... As a hypothetical example of how such technology may be of use in CAM research, the activation of brain networks known to be involved in social cognition can be examined when a child views a familiar TV character as compared to a similar but novel character. There is some indication that a parasocial relationship enhances children's learning from TV characters (e.g., Calvert, Richards, & Kent, 2014) and that toddlers learn better from interactions with a real person compared to the same person on a video screen. EEG and MEG studies could clarify whether and how activation of social cognition brain networks underlies the power of parasocial relationships. ...
Article
Full-text available
There is a great opportunity for modern technologies to advance research on children and media. Noninvasive data collection and analysis of a large variety of behaviors and bodily functions are becoming more possible, affordable, and useable with children. These include brain imaging, genetic and epigenetic analysis, hormonal assays, eye tracking, actigraphy, point of view video recording, content analysis, and language analysis. The possibilities for entirely new perspectives and forms of knowledge are exciting and growing.
... Gola et al. (2013) pointed out that children's learning performance is increased from unknown personae over time because children form emotional bonds with these figures. Calvert et al. (2014) extended these findings by stating that 18-month-old children learn better with personalized personae. For example, personalization was operationalized through favorites (e.g., the same food or song preferences). ...
Article
Full-text available
For a long time, research on individuals learning in digital environments was primarily based on cognitive-oriented theories. This paper aims at providing evidence that social processes affect individual learning with digital materials. Based on these theories and empirical results, a social-processes-augmented theory is suggested: the Cognitive-Affective-Social Theory of Learning in digital Environments (CASTLE). This CASTLE postulates that social cues in digital materials activate social schemata in learners leading to enhanced (para-)social, motivational, emotional, and metacognitive processes. To substantiate this theory, socio-cognitive theories are used, which predict social influences on learning with digital materials. Besides, previous empirical findings are presented assuming that with a rising number of social cues in digital materials, the influence of social processes increases. Finally, consequences regarding the design of digital learning media are discussed.
... This is achieved by using a central character (SeeMore Safety) to foster a strong connection between the early learning centre and the home as well as to provide a vehicle for athome learning consolidation. Having an engaging character such as SeeMore Safety helps children to act on the information they receive in a real-world situation [28,38]. ...
Article
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Globally, injuries are the leading cause of death and represent the highest burden of ongoing disease amongst children 1–16 years of age. Increasingly, prevention programmes are recognising a growing need for intervention strategies that target children. The purpose of this study was to determine the efficacy of the SeeMore Safety Programme, designed to teach children (4–6 years of age) how to make conscious decisions about their own capabilities related to safety and how to manage risk. This retrospective study examined de-identified pre- and post-programme data from a sample of 1027 4 to 6-year-old pre-school children over the four-year period who participated in the SeeMore Safety Programme. Results show a significant improvement in each of the post-test scores and when compared to the pre-test scores (p < 0.001). Children from rural areas, as well as those from areas of greater disadvantage, also showed significant improvement in their pre- and post-test scores (p < 0.001). Overall, the findings highlight that the SeeMore Safety Programme over the four-year period demonstrates an increase in the children’s capacity to recognise and identify danger and safety amongst all children, offering great promise for reducing the burden of injury on children, their families and society.
... For example, a child can practice addition with the toy, which will provide subsequent questions based on the child's responses. Children's tendency to develop close "parasocial relationships" with virtual characters may be heightened when their toys respond to them (Calvert, Richards, & Kent, 2014); research will be needed to determine if interacting with this new kind of social partner affects development. ...
Chapter
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Since early in the development of children's television, research has informed policy and practice involving young children's media use. To increase the likelihood that new media support children's development, research in the coming decade must stay current with advancing technology. With the advent of various forms of interactive digital media, key research questions involve social and physical interactivity. How should adults appropriately support children's use of different kinds of media to promote children's creativity, learning, and development? How does co-viewing (social interaction) overlap with and differ from contingency built into the medium itself? When a device interacts, does that change the kind of support required of a co-viewing adult, or eliminate the need for such support? How does the introduction of new technology impact the lives of families? Issues related to video chat, touchscreen and motion capture technology, artificial intelligence, and electronic books and games are discussed. (147 words)
... yang menyerupai karakter media yang akrab untuk anak kecil seperti Barney biasanya dirancang untuk menciptakan ikatan sosial dan emosional antara anakanak dan karakter memberikan hal positif dari karakter-karakter interaktif, seperti keharmonisan, personalitas yang akrab dan autentik, humor, dan spontanitas, digunakan untuk mengembangkan interaksi (Calvert. 2014). Motivasi sangat penting untuk pembelajaran khususnya di lingkungan e-learning di mana peserta didik harus mengambil peran aktif dalam pembelajaran mereka dengan menjadi mandiri, pendidikan jarak jauh berfokus pada masalah motivasi pelajar juga dapat dipengaruhi oleh aspek eksternal (Ueno. 2004). Cara meningkatkan motivasi peserta didik ...
... For example, young children are typically able to find a hidden toy when given the directions face-to-face from a person, but not when the directions are given via a screen. Young children perform best with digital media when the characters in the media talk directly to them and allow them time to respond [70]. Because many children with ASD have cognitive delays, they may be even older before they overcome the transfer deficit. ...
Article
Background: Research is increasingly raising concerns regarding the negative consequences of children's use of screens. Summary: This article reviews the literature on the benefits and risks of screen time with attention to explaining possible reasons that children with autism are more at risk for the negative effects of screen time. Based on the science of learning literature, a framework for choosing appropriate digital media for children with autism is described. The 3-component framework considers the characteristics of the child, the context in which digital media are used, and the content of the media. Key Message: Using the framework, the speech-language pathologist will be better able to select appropriate digital media content for children with autism that is engaging (while not being distracting), encourages the child to be actively involved with the media, is meaningful in the child's life, and incorporates social interactions with others.
... Parasocial relationships with media characters positively enhance children's interest in learning online content from them. 10 Like advertising, the videos are short, the imagery memorable, and the song catchy. ...
Article
Getting children to eat fruits and vegetables (FV) is an important strategy for the prevention of childhood obesity. However, efforts to increase access to FV have also resulted in many of the vegetables and fruits being wasted, leaving children without the nutritional benefits and the resources not achieving their full desired impact. Multidisciplinary influences have shaped a new program for children ages 2 to 7 that can increase the desirability of and consumption of FV. The Guinea Show is easy-to-use, entertaining, and low cost and features an innovative role model. Results from field tests of The Guinea Show in preschool classrooms are included and indicate that children are more likely to try FV. Brief instructions on how to use this method are described.
... Meaningful parasocial relationships can also be built with unfamiliar characters. For instance, when compared to a no character exposure control group, toddlers who had played for 3 months with a previously unfamiliar character as a plush puppet (Gola, Richards, Lauricella, & Calvert, 2013) or with a previously unfamiliar personalized interactive toy character (Calvert, Richards, & Kent, 2014) learned math better after viewing those characters subsequently present a seriation task on a screen. In both studies, toddlers who formed the closest parasocial relationships with characters as toys, as measured by nurturing toys during play, subsequently learned the most from those characters Gola et al., 2013). ...
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Children’s math learning (N = 217; Mage = 4.87 years; 63% European American, 96% college‐educated families) from an intelligent character game was examined via social meaningfulness (parasocial relationships [PSRs]) and social contingency (parasocial interactions, e.g., math talk). In three studies (data collected in the DC area: 12/2015–10/2017), children’s parasocial relationships and math talk with the intelligent character predicted quicker, more accurate math responses during virtual game play. Children performed better on a math transfer task with physical objects when exposed to an embodied character (Study 2), and when the character used socially contingent replies, which was mediated by math talk (Study 3). Results suggest that children’s parasocial relationships and parasocial interactions with intelligent characters provide new frontiers for 21st century learning.
... Intensive interactions between media users and media characters, based on an initial contact or a consistent parasocial relationship, show associa tions with other reception phenomena. High attention , more intensive information processing (Calvert, Richards, & Kent, 2014), stronger emotional experiences (e.g., higher suspense or enter tainment experiences, if allowed by the medium) (Hartmann, Stuke, & Daschmann, 2008), and more intensive physical activities-in short, an increased cognitive, emotional and conative involvement-are typical side effects (Kim & Rubin, 1997). Some results show that intensified PSI could correlate with high relaxation and decreased emotional stress . ...
Chapter
From television to computers to new mobile touchscreen devices, children’s social interactions and relationships are increasingly embedded in media. This chapter will summarize how children learn from screens, emphasizing the importance of social factors in their learning. We argue here that the one-sided, emotionally tinged relationships that children form with media characters, known as parasocial relationships, influence children’s acquisition of information presented on screens. More specifically, these parasocial relationships can be instrumental in aiding children in their understanding of concepts that are essential for success in school, including language learning and STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics) topic areas. We then turn to future research directions in which we highlight robots and intelligent agents as technologies that will increasingly blur the lines between what is real and what is not. The implication is that social influences that occur through real people also apply to children’s learning from favorite media characters, providing an important avenue for teaching essential educational concepts in twenty-first century homes and classrooms across numerous media platforms.
Article
Children’s parasocial relationships (PSRs) with media characters end through a process called PSR breakups. An online parent report measure was used to describe preschool and school-aged children’s breakups with media characters, as well as the attributes of past and current favorite characters. According to parents (N = 138), 51% of children experienced PSR breakups. PSRs lasted about two years before a breakup occurred. Past and current favorite characters were animated, human-like, and embedded in fantastical content. Current favorite characters taught fewer academic lessons than past favorite characters. Both boys and girls had current favorite characters that were more gendered in their physical appearance than past favorite characters. However, girls’ current favorite characters had more masculine traits than past favorite characters. Our findings suggest possible avenues for the design of future media characters that can teach as they entertain.
Article
Adults and children form one-sided, emotionally tinged relationships with media characters known as parasocial relationships. Studies have measured adult conceptions of their own parasocial relationships and parent perceptions of their children’s parasocial relationships, but little is known about how to quantify young children’s perceptions of their own parasocial relationships. In this study, a child self-report survey was developed based on prior parental surveys and behavioral measures to operationalize children’s parasocial relationships. Results revealed that 2–6 year-old U.S. children can name and report about their favorite media characters, who were the target for assessing parasocial relationships. Factor analyses indicated three components of children’s parasocial relationships: attachment and friendship, humanlike needs, and social realism. Although the internal consistency improved with age on attachment and friendship and social realism, only the attachment and friendship subscale reached conventional acceptable levels of internal consistency. This study provides a new method for operationalizing children’s parasocial relationships through child interview and describes future research directions for improving the internal consistency of the child subscales.
Article
This study examines parent perceptions of their young children’s one-sided, emotionally tinged relationships with media characters, also known as parasocial relationships (PSR). Prior research has collected data on young children’s PSR by surveying parents, while other studies have relied directly on child interview. The current study is the first to compare children’s answers to those of their parents. Factor analyses revealed that parents and children both reported three components of children’s PSR: social realism, attachment and character personification (parents) or attachment and friendship (for their children), and humanlike needs. Both parent and child reports accounted for approximately 60% of the variance in children’s PSR. Nonetheless, only approximately one-third of parents and children reported on the same favorite character. The implications for research on children’s PSR using both parent and child reports are discussed.
Article
Children experience emotionally tinged parasocial relationships with their favorite media characters across a constantly changing media landscape. On the frontier of this landscape are intelligent agents: digital companions that can socially interact with and educate children. We discuss how research on parasocial relationships with media characters can influence the design of intelligent “characters” for children. We discuss the components of parasocial relationships—including attachment, character personification, and social realism—and how these may play a role in developing intelligent characters as effective educational tools. We also examine the development and dissolution of parasocial relationships, and how these factors can inform intelligent character design. Educational and social implications for these technologies as teaching tools are also discussed.
Conference Paper
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From the Analysis of the results obtained from surveys conducted worldwide by the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) in May 2005, it is possible to observe, the low level of reading ability of Mexicans, compared to other countries. The average of books read per year in Mexico is 2.9 per person. In this research we propose, the use of technology to increase the interest in reading in first time readers. We pretend to use Immersive reality for generating new bonding experiences between children and stories. Studies and reading habits surveys show that the ideal stage to receive motivation and generate interest for reading is childhood. That’s why we focus on first time readers which cover a range of age from 8 to 12 years old, according to standards of some publishers in Mexico.
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In three experiments, 32-month-old children (n = 40 for Experiment 1, n = 36 for Experiment 2) and 24-month-old children (n = 33 for Experiment 3) were asked to judge the credibility of information presented on a touchscreen device. The information was delivered by a familiar and an unfamiliar media character. Two app conditions varied on which character was accurate in naming familiar fruits. Then both characters labeled four novel fruits with nonsense words. Feedback about the accuracy of the characters’ labels of the familiar fruits was provided in Experiments 1 and 3, but no such feedback was provided in Experiment 2. Children were more likely to endorse the accurate character as the correct labeler of the novel fruits, regardless of prior familiarity with the character, the feedback presented in the touchscreen application, or the age of the child. Parent scaffolding affected only the 24-month-old children. The results reveal that very young children can make relatively sophisticated judgments about the credibility of information encountered on touchscreen devices.
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Digital technologies have become a regular part of everyday life and children meet them already during infancy. Excessive use of smartphones, tablets or computers has negative consequences, including the risk of pathological development and causing mental health problems (gaming disorder is already described in ICD-11). There is no question whether children should or shouldn’t use modern technology, but when, and how to set the rules of use and how to be a good guide. Pediatricians are expected to know when and how to talk to families and children in order to reduce the potential risks of over-exploiting technology and to prevent the development of technological addiction – it is desirable to limit the screen time, to choose the appropriate content and to ensure optimal ways of parental intervention.
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Children's parasocial relationships have been understudied, even though recent research suggests that children learn better from socially meaningful than from socially irrelevant media characters. This study articulates a model of parasocial relationship development among children and, in the process, establishes new measures of children's parasocial interactions and parasocial relationships. Parents of children ( ≤ 8 years old) completed an online questionnaire about their child's favorite media character. The measure of parental perceptions of children's parasocial relationships was composed of three dimensions: character personification, social realism, and attachment. The measure was then utilized as the endogenous variable in a model predicting parental perceptions of children's parasocial relationships. The model revealed that engagement with toy replicas of media characters, repeated media exposure, parent encouragement, and parasocial interactions were significantly related to parental perceptions of young children's parasocial relationships. The possible influence of parasocial relationships on children's potential to learn from media characters is discussed.
Conference Paper
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We conducted an fMRI study to investigate emotionality in human-robot interaction. Subjects (N=14) were presented videos showing a human, a robot and an unanimated object, being treated in either an affectionate or a violent way. Violent interaction towards both the robot and the human resulted in similar neural activation patterns in classic limbic structures indicating that both the robot and the human elicit similar emotional reactions. However, differences in neural activity suggest that participants show more negative empathetic concern for the human in a negative situation.
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Although robots are starting to enter into our professional and private lives, little is known about the emotional effects which robots elicit. However, insights into this topic are an important prerequisite when discussing, for example, ethical issues regarding the question of what role we (want to) allow robots to play in our lives. In line with the Media Equation, humans may react towards robots as they do towards humans, making it all the more important to carefully investigate the preconditions and consequences of contact with robots. Based on assumptions on the socialness of reactions towards robots and anecdotal evidence of emotional attachments to robots (e. g. Klamer and BenAllouch in Trappl R. (ed.), Proceedings of EMCSR 2010, Vienna, 2010; Klamer and BenAllouch in Proceedings of the 27th International Conference on Human Factors in Computing Systems (CHI-2010), Atlanta, GA. ACM, New York, 2010; Kramer et al. in Appl. Artif. Intell. 25(6): 474-502, 2011), we conducted a study that provides further insights into the question of whether humans show emotional reactions towards Ugobe's Pleo, which is shown in different situations. We used a 2 x 2 design with one between-subjects factor "prior interaction with the robot" (never seen the robot before vs. 10-minute interaction with the robot) and a within-subject factor "type of video" (friendly interaction video vs. torture video). Following a multi-method approach, we assessed participants' physiological arousal and self-reported emotions as well as their general evaluation of the videos and the robot. In line with our hypotheses, participants showed increased physiological arousal during the reception of the torture video as compared to the normal video. They also reported fewer positive and more negative feelings after the torture video and expressed empathic concern for the robot. It appears that the acquaintance with the robot does not play a role, as "prior interaction with the robot" showed no effect.
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To investigate play with electronic toys (battery-operated or digital), 25 mother–toddler (16–24 months old) dyads were videotaped in their homes playing with sets of age-appropriate electronic and non-electronic toys for approximately 10 min each. Parent–child interactions were coded from recorded segments of both of the play conditions using the PICCOLO checklist. Mean scores for each play session were compared and the result showed significantly lower scores in the electronic toy condition for three of the four domains of the PICCOLO. Family demographic and play pattern data were also collected, via self-report questionnaire. These data indicated that the play experiences of toddlers were compromised by the lower quality of parent–child interaction during joint play with electronic toys. The potential impact on early child development and suggestions for future research are discussed.
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There are only a few instruments to assess mathematics knowledge and skills in children as young as three to four years of age, and these instruments are limited in scope of content. We describe the development of a theoretically based, empirically tested instrument designed to measure the mathematical knowledge and skills of children from three to seven years of age, emphasising its submission to the Rasch model. After using the data to refine the instrument, they fit the model well, with high reliability. These data also provided empirical support for the developmental progressions for most topics. We conclude with a description of the research’s contribution to theory and empirical research regarding young children’s development of specific mathematical competencies.
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Research on parasocial interactions (PSI) and parasocial relationships (PSR) refers back to a tradition of 50 years. However, research on both phenomena still suffers from overlapping definitions and resulting measurements that do not distinguish between PSI and PSR. The present study presents a post-exposure measurement tool (the PSI-Process Scales) that aims to measure PSI instead of PSR. It is derived from a theoretical model that specifically focuses on PSI. Psychometric analyses indicate the tool's high usability. It is capable of displaying both the intensity and the dimensionality of PSI. It can. be applied to measure both positive and negative PSI across all TV formats, without changing the item wording. In sum, the PSI-Process-Scales may offer a valuable alternative for researchers in the field, specifically if they want to assess parasocial processes that take place throughout TV exposure
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Blue's Clues is a preschool television series designed to promote mastery of thinking and problem-solving skills. This paper summarizes a series of studies concerning the impact of the program on television viewing behaviors and on cognitive development. Three studies of viewing behavior indicate that as preschool children were in the process of learning from the program they were relatively quiet and highly attentive. As they mastered the content they became increasingly vocal and interactive. Their tendency to interact with Blue's Clues transferred to another program from a different series. A longitudinal study comparing children who regularly watched Blue's Clues to demographically similar children who could not receive the program indicated that the program had a positive impact on cognitive development.
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Toddlers' performance on a seriation sequencing task was measured after exposure to a video as a function of the social meaningfulness of the character. Forty eight 21-month-old toddlers were randomly assigned to a socially meaningful character video demonstration, a less socially meaningful character video demonstration, or a no exposure control group. Results indicated that toddlers learned the seriation sequencing task better from a video when a socially meaningful character, rather than a less socially meaningful character, demonstrated the task. Our findings demonstrate that toddlers under age two can learn cognitive, logical reasoning skills from a video presentation when the onscreen character is socially meaningful to them.
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16 15-min children's TV programs varying in continuity (high vs low), pace (high vs low), and animation (cartoon vs live production) were made from broadcast material and shown to 80 children from kindergarten and 1st grade and 80 children from 3rd–4th grade. Ss viewed 2 of the programs and were then tested for recall. The recall task required sequential seriation of still photos taken from the program. Older Ss attended longer and reconstructed sequences better than younger Ss. High-continuity (story) programs led to greater attention and better recall than low-continuity (magazine) programs. Low-paced shows were recalled better than high-paced shows. Older Ss recalled best when shown either low pace or story format or both. Young Ss showed additive increments in recall due to low pace and high continuity. Regression analyses indicated higher correlations between attention and recall for animated stories than for other types of programs, an effect attributed to their relatively high stereotypy in the medium. Results are interpreted as indicating evidence for development of active, schematic processing of TV by children and for strategic attending by older children, based on perceived processing demands. (17 ref) (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2012 APA, all rights reserved)
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Cognitive developmental theory predicts that gender constant children bias their attention to same-sex TV characters compared with children who have not achieved gender constancy. The TV viewing at home of 24 5-year-old children was videotaped over 10 days. Half of the children were high in gender constancy. Gender constant boys biased their attention consistent with the hypothesis, and they viewed programs featuring a greater percentage of men as TV characters than did preconstant boys. An analysis of TV-viewing diaries of 313 5-yr-olds showed that gender constant boys viewed more programming intended for adults (especially sports and action programs) than did preconstant boys. Gender constant girls viewed more action programming than did preconstant girls. There was no association of the Peabody Picture Vocabulary Test IQ with level of gender constancy. Gender constancy is associated with multiple changes in TV-viewing behavior especially in boys. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2012 APA, all rights reserved)
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Children (aged 5 and 7 yrs) judged factuality and social realism of favorite TV shows and test clips in pairs matched for content. In each pair one was news or documentary format, the other fictional drama. All Ss understood that fictional programs were not factual. The Ss correctly discriminated the purposes and intended audience of news from those of documentaries. Ss discriminated factuality by genre of program, and genre of program by formal production features and by content. Age and vocabulary scores (Peabody Picture Vocabulary Test—Revised [PPVT—R]) predicted accuracy of factuality judgments, but TV viewing history over the past 2 yrs did not. By contrast, judged social realism was predicted by viewing history and very little by age and PPVT—R. Older Ss better understood that fictional characters do not retain their roles in real life and that fictional shows are scripted and rehearsed. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2012 APA, all rights reserved)
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The MacArthur Communicative Development Inventories (CDIs) are a pair of widely used parent-report instruments for assessing communicative skills in infants and toddlers. This report describes short-form versions of the CDIs and their development, summarizes newly available normative data and psychometric properties of the instruments, and discusses research and clinical applications. The infant short form (Level I, for 8- to 18-month-olds) contains an 89-word checklist for vocabulary comprehension and production. The two parallel versions of the toddler short form (Level II, Forms A and B, for 16- to 30-month-olds) each contain a 100-word vocabulary production checklist and a question about word combinations. The forms may also be useful with developmentally delayed children beyond the specified age ranges. Copies of the short forms and the normative tables appear in the appendices.
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Television has become a nearly ubiquitous feature in children's cultural landscape. A review of the research into young children's learning from television indicates that the likelihood that children will learn from screen media is influenced by their developing social relationships with on-screen characters, as much as by their developing perception of the screen and their symbolic understanding and comprehension of information presented on screen. Considering the circumstances in which children under 6 years learn from screen media can inform teachers, parents, and researchers about the important nature of social interaction in early learning and development. The findings reviewed in this article suggest the social nature of learning, even learning from screen media.
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This article presents the results of a meta-analysis of 58 studies of mathematics interventions for elementary students with special needs. Interventions in three different domains were selected: preparatory mathematics, basic skills, and problem-solving strategies. The majority of the included studies described interventions in the domain of basic skills. In general, these interventions were also the most effective. Furthermore, a few specific characteristics were found to influence the outcomes of the studies. In addition to the duration of the intervention, the particular method of intervention proved important: Direct instruction and self-instruction were found to be more effective than mediated instruction. Interventions involving the use of computer-assisted instruction and peer tutoring showed smaller effects than interventions not including these supports.
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Two-year-old children's reasoning about the relation between their own and others' preferences was investigated across two studies. In Experiment 1, children first observed 2 actors display their individual preferences for various toys. Children were then asked to make inferences about new, visually inaccessible toys and books that were described as being the favorite of each actor, unfamiliar to each actor, or disliked by each actor. Children tended to select the favorite toys and books from the actor who shared their own preference but chose randomly when the new items were unfamiliar to or disliked by the two actors. Experiment 2 extended these findings, showing that children do not generalize a shared preference across unrelated categories of items. Taken together, the results suggest that young children readily recognize when another person holds a preference similar to their own and use that knowledge appropriately to achieve desired outcomes.
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The focus of this study was the strategies used by young children between 18 and 42 months for correcting the errors they made as they attempted to nest a set of 5 seriated cups. In the process of combining the cups, the children committed numerous errors (such as putting a cup that was too large on a smaller cup), and they tried to correct the majority of those errors. Detailed examination of the children's correction attempts revealed that the strategies they used changed substantially with age, becoming increasingly more flexible and involving more extensive restructuring of the relations among the cups. Earlier correction attempts tended to focus on a single, nonfitting cup or on a single relation between 2 cups. Later-appearing strategies involved the coordination of relations involving several cups. The same trend toward increasing flexibility of thought and action also appeared in the procedures the children used to combine the cups. This study thus documents a finely graded series of cognitively significant changes in children's constructive activity during a period that has been poorly differentiated by cognitive developmental research. In so doing, it demonstrates the usefulness for problem-solving research of analyzing how subjects go about trying to rectify their own mistakes.
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We aimed to assess individual differences in complaints in patients just before total hip replacement (THR) and the importance attached to the relief of each of them. In a pilot study, using open-ended interviews, we identified 16 main complaints, four of which (night pain, unequal leg length and discomfort during sexual and recreational activities) were not included in any of the six hip-rating scales in general use. Each of the 16 complaints was then assessed in 72 patients and rated for severity and the relative importance of relief. From this we calculated a severity-importance rating for each complaint and a patient-specific score for all complaints. The 72 patients had a mean age of 64 years (17 to 92) and 51% were men. The most important reasons for wanting a THR were day pain and walking difficulty, but the complaints mentioned above and not included in standard hip scores were also important. Greater attention to the individual requirements of patients might improve evaluation of the outcome of orthopaedic treatments.
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16 15-min children's TV programs varying in continuity (high vs low), pace (high vs low), and animation (cartoon vs live production) were made from broadcast material and shown to 80 children from kindergarten and 1st grade and 80 children from 3rd-4th grade. Ss viewed 2 of the programs and were then tested for recall. The recall task required sequential seriation of still photos taken from the program. Older Ss attended longer and reconstructed sequences better than younger Ss. High-continuity (story) programs led to greater attention and better recall than low-continuity (magazine) programs. Low-paced shows were recalled better than high-paced shows. Older Ss recalled best when shown either low pace or story format or both. Young Ss showed additive increments in recall due to low pace and high continuity. Regression analyses indicated higher correlations between attention and recall for animated stories than for other types of programs, an effect attributed to their relatively high stereotypy in the medium. Results are interpreted as indicating evidence for development of active, schematic processing of TV by children and for strategic attending by older children, based on perceived processing demands. (17 ref) (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2006 APA, all rights reserved).
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Very young children have difficulty transferring what they view onscreen to their offscreen worlds. This study examined whether familiarizing toddlers with a character would improve toddlers' performance on a subsequent seriation task. Toddlers were randomly assigned to one of three conditions: (1) a familiarized character condition where toddlers viewed character-based videos and engaged in character-based play over a 3-month period before viewing the seriation video demonstration; (2) an unfamiliarized character condition where the toddler only saw the seriation video demonstration; and (3) a no-exposure control group where the toddler did not see the seriation video demonstration or have any involvement with the character. All toddlers were tested on the same seriation task at age 21 months, with the familiarized character group beginning the study at age 18 months and the other groups participating only at age 21 months. Toddlers in the familiarized character condition, but not the unfamiliarized character condition, completed the seriation task significantly better than the no-exposure control group. Within the familiarized character condition, toddlers who nurtured the character during play subsequently had higher seriation scores. The results suggest that meaningful relationships with media characters can help toddlers learn early mathematical skills.
Book
Developmental and child psychology remains a vital area in modern psychology. This comprehensive set covers a broad spectrum of developmenal issues, from the psychology of the infant, the family, abilities and disabilities, children's art, imagination, play, speech, mental development, perception, intelligence, mental health and education. In looking at areas which continue to be very important today, these volumes provide a fascinating look at how approaches and attitudes to children have changed over the years. The set includes nine volumes by key development psychologist Jean Piaget, as well as titles by Charlotte Buhler and Susan Isaacs.
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Children's television programming frequently uses interactive characters that appear to directly engage the viewers. These characters encourage children to answer questions and perform actions to help the characters solve problems in the televised world. Children readily engage in these interactions; however, it is unclear why they do so. To investigate this issue, 53 5-, 7-, and 9-year-olds made decisions about events occurring in the real world based on information provided by a live individual and by a televised interactive computer-generated character. Five-year-olds followed the advice of both the live individual and the televised computer-generated character, whereas 7- and 9-year-olds only followed the advice of the live individual. Results are discussed in terms of a transition from children believing that interactive televised characters can engage in a real communicative interaction to children understanding that this apparent interaction is an illusion.
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Infants’ visual preferences for gender-stereotyped toys and their knowledge of stereotyped toys were examined in two experiments using an adaptation of the preferential looking paradigm. Girls and boys aged 12, 18, and 24 months were tested for their preference for photos of vehicles or dolls, and for whether they associated (“matched”) these two stereotyped sets of toys with the faces and voices of male and female children. Results of Experiment 1 (N = 77) demonstrated significant preferences for gender stereotyped toys appearing by 18 months of age. In Experiment 2 (N = 58), girls were able to associate the gender-stereotyped toys with girls’ and boys’ faces by 18 months of age, but boys were not. Implications for theories of early gender development are discussed.
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This volume is intended to make the disparate literature on educational television's impact more accessible, by bringing it together into a centralized resource. To that end, the volume draws together empirical data on the impact of educational television programs--both academic and prosocial--on children's knowledge, skills, attitudes, and behavior. In addition to its emphasis on positive effects, this volume addresses a gap in the existing research literature regarding children's learning from exposure to educational television. Acknowledging that little theoretical work has been done to explain why or how these effects occur, Fisch takes a step toward correcting this situation by proposing theoretical models to explore aspects of the mental processing that underlies children's learning from educational television.
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Young Hispanic and Caucasian children viewed an animated educational television program in conditions that varied the level of interaction required. Girls and Caucasian children identified with the Hispanic female character more than boys and Hispanic children did. Children who actively responded to character prompts were more likely to understand the important program content than were those who simply observed it. Interaction was especially beneficial to Hispanic girls. The results suggest that programs designed to involve children in the content through participation or interaction provide unique opportunities for children to learn important educational media content, and that even very young children are sensitive to qualities of the symbolic role models who deliver those messages.
Article
The effects of prosocial television alone and in combination with training, verbal labeling and role playing on learning and helping behavior were assessed. 73 kindergarten children were assigned to 1 of 5 conditions for the 4 viewing and training sessions: neutral television and irrelevant training, prosocial television and irrelevant training, prosocial television and verbal labeling training, prosocial television and role playing training, or prosocial television and both verbal labeling and role playing training. Three measures of learning were employed: a content test to measure knowledge of specific content of programs and generalization of themes to other situations, a puppet measure to assess both spontaneous speech related to program content and helping behavior in a fantasy context, and a third measure designed as a behavioral index of helping another child. The results provide support for the prediction that children learn the prosocial content of television programs and generalize that learning to other situations. Support is also found for the prediction that training enhances verbal learning and affects actual helping behavior. The verbal labeling had the greatest impact on the verbal measures of learning, particularly for girls, and role playing training was more effective, particularly for boys, in increasing nonverbal helping behavior. The 3 diverse measures of learning, both specific and generalized, were positively related to one another. This was true for verbal as well as behavioral indices of helping.
Article
Two experiments were conducted to test several questions regarding very young children's (6–24 months) learning (i.e., simple action imitation and word learning) from video. Specifically, this study tested the video deficit, which is the tendency for infants and toddlers to learn significantly more effectively from live information than they do when identical information is presented on a screen. First, the video deficit was explored using two different tasks. Overall, the pattern of results was similar for action imitation and word learning. Specifically, the video deficit was present for both simple action imitation and for word learning in the middle cohort, but not present for younger and older children. Second, there was some mitigation of the video deficit from seeing socially meaningful actors for action imitation; however for word learning the effect only approached significance. Third, repetition helped children learn words more effectively, especially for the youngest and oldest cohort; however, repetition did not help for simple task imitation.
Article
40 infants, divided into 10 evenly spaced age groups between the ages of 7.5 and 21 mo, were observed playing with 2 sets of toys in their own homes for up to 30 min. Narrative records of Ss' behavior were coded in terms of a 12-step sequence of play development. Analysis of individual performance indicated that this level-of-play scale satisfied the requirements of a valid Guttman scale. Analyses of means revealed that frequency of mouthing and simple manipulation decreased linearly across the age period studied, whereas several types of pretense play increased linearly. Behavior that involved relating 2 or more materials and approximation of pretense behavior displayed curvilinear functions, which suggests that they are transitional forms of activity that link early exploration with more developmentally advanced pretense play. (26 ref) (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2012 APA, all rights reserved)
Chapter
History and Foundation: US Children's Media Environment and Early Public PolicyNon-Commercial TelevisionThe Cable RevolutionCurrent Environment for Children's MediaFour Prototypical Television Financing ModelsConclusion References
Article
Is a concept of either reversibility or of hierarchical forms of combination necessary for skilled seriation? We examined this question by presenting seriating cups to adult capuchin monkeys and chimpanzees and to 11-, 16- and 21-month-old children. Capuchins and chimpanzees consistently created seriated sets with five cups, and placed a sixth cup into a previously seriated set. Children of all three ages created seriated five-cup sets less consistently than the capuchins and chimpanzees, and were rarely able to place a sixth cup into a seriated set. Twenty-one-month-olds produced more structures containing three or more cups than did the younger age groups, and these children also achieved seriated sets more frequently. Within all participant groups, success at seriating five cups was associated with the frequency of combining three or more cups, regardless of form. The ability to integrate multiple elements in persistent combinatorial activity is sufficient for the emergence of seriation in young children, monkeys and apes. Reliance on particular methods of combination and a concept of reversibility are later refinements that can enhance skilled seriation.
Chapter
The Oxford Handbook of Internet Psychology brings together many researchers in what can be termed Internet Psychology. Though a very new area of research, Internet Psychology is a fast-growing one. In addition to well-studied areas of investigation, such as social identity theory, computer-mediated communication, and virtual communities, the book also includes articles on topics as diverse as deception and misrepresentation, attitude change and persuasion online, Internet addiction, online relationships, privacy and trust, health and leisure use of the Internet, and the nature of interactivity. With over thirty articles written by experts in the field, it serves to define this emerging area of research. This content is supported by a section covering the use of the Internet as a research tool, including qualitative and quantitative methods, online survey design, personality testing, ethics, and technological and design issues. While it is likely to be a popular research resource to be "dipped into", as a whole book it is coherent enough to act as a single textbook.
Article
Big Math for Little Kids, a comprehensive program for 4- and 5-year-olds, develops and expands on the mathematics that children know and are capable of doing. The program uses activities and stories to develop ideas about number, shape, pattern, logical reasoning, measurement, operations on numbers, and space. The activities introduce the mathematical ideas in a coherent, carefully sequenced fashion, and are designed to promote curiosity and excitement about learning and doing mathematics. The program produces playful but purposeful learning of deep mathematical ideas, and encourages children to think about and express their mathematical thinking. Throughout the program, great emphasis is placed on the development of mathematical and mathematics-related language. Our observations suggest two broad questions for future research: What kinds of competence can children develop in the context of a rich mathematics environment? In what ways can mathematics learning promote language and literacy?
Article
Systematic observation of American children from 11 to 36 months of age playing with seriated nesting cups established the existence of a developmental sequence of rulebound or consistent strategies for combining the cups. The three action strategies seem formally homologous to certain grammatical constructions, and the manipulative strategies are acquired in the same developmental order as the corresponding grammatical structures. These strategies might therefore constitute a manifestation of some underlying structural capacities critical for language acquisition. The development of seriation described by Piaget for children from 4 to 8 years of age working with other materials was replicated in this much younger age range using nesting cups. These stages in the growth of a concept of ordinal quantity turn out to be empirically and theoretically related to the rulebound strategies upon which the study focused.
Conference Paper
ActiMates™ Barney™ represents a new form of interactive learning product for two- to five-year old children: a small computer that looks like an animated plush doll. He can be used as a freestanding toy and, by means of a wireless radio link, he can interact with PC-based software and linear videotapes. In each mode, Barney takes advantage of children's social expectations about playmate performance to engage the user in learning interactions. The theory and practice behind Barney's performance in each mode (freestanding, with the computer, and with the television) are described, as well as how key research results shaped the interface across the different modes.
Conference Paper
Character-based social interfaces present a unique opportunityto integrate emotion into technology interactions. The presentpaper reports on the use of three emotional interactions (humor,praise, and affection) in the audio interfaces for twocharacter-based interactive learning toys. The reasons forselecting the emotions used, the design rationale for theirapplication, and findings from usability testing are reviewed. Itis suggested that as a form of pretend play-acting akin topuppetry, social interfaces can engage the emotions of users in avariety of beneficial ways.
Article
In previous studies, very young children have learned words while "overhearing" a conversation, yet they have had trouble learning words from a person on video. In Study 1, 64 toddlers (mean age=29.8 months) viewed an object-labeling demonstration in 1 of 4 conditions. In 2, the speaker (present or on video) directly addressed the child, and in 2, the speaker addressed another adult who was present or was with her on video. Study 2 involved 2 follow-up conditions with 32 toddlers (mean age=30.4 months). Across the 2 studies, the results indicated that toddlers learned words best when participating in or observing a reciprocal social interaction with a speaker who was present or on video.
Article
The National Council of Teachers of Mathematics emphasizes that young children need play-based opportunities to develop and deepen their conceptual understanding of mathematics. From a social-constructivist perspective, learning is more likely to occur if adults or more-competent peers mediate children's learning experiences. Emphasizing both the developmental and the curricular perspectives, this article focuses on the role of the teacher in guiding preschool children's mathematical learning while they play with everyday materials. Professional growth in three areas was identified as critical in teachers' learning to guide young children's learning of mathematical concepts. First is the ability to recognize children's demonstrated understanding of mathematical concepts, second is the ability to use mathematical language to guide their progress from behavioral to representational understanding of mathematical concepts, and third is the ability to assess systematically children's understanding of mathematical concepts. Checklists tracing the development of three fundamental mathematical concepts—one-to-one correspondence, classification, and seriation—are suggested as tools for teachers to monitor preschool children's learning of mathematical concepts and plan appropriate learning experiences within children's zones of proximal development. Creating an environment that is mathematically empowering and mediating children's experiences in this environment establish the foundation for constructing, modifying, and integrating mathematical concepts in young children.
Article
4 developmental levels of gender constancy were identified in 55 preschool-age children on the basis of a reproducible Guttman scale of answers to sets of questions pertaining to gender identity, gender stability over time, and gender consistency across situations. Children's developmental level of gender constancy was predictive of the amount and the proportion of time they attended to an adult male and an adult female film model. As boys developed gender constancy, their relative preference for watching the male model increased significantly; as girls developed gender constancy, their relative preference for watching the female model increased, though not significantly. At the more advanced levels of gender constancy, boys watched the male model more than did girls. It was suggested that same-sex social learning may develop as a function of children's cognitive understanding of gender as an identifiable, stable and consistent human attribute.
Article
The world of television activates, cultivates, and alters the gender schemata that children bring to the viewing situation.
Article
Although prior research clearly shows that toddlers have difficulty learning from video, the basis for their difficulty is unknown. In the 2 current experiments, the effect of social feedback on 2-year-olds' use of information from video was assessed. Children who were told "face to face" where to find a hidden toy typically found it, but children who were given the same information by a person on video did not. Children who engaged in a 5-min contingent interaction with a person (including social cues and personal references) through closed-circuit video before the hiding task used information provided to find the toy. These findings have important implications for educational television and use of video stimuli in laboratory-based research with young children.
Article
Parents commonly label objects on television and for some programs, verbal labels are also provided directly via voice-over. The present study investigated whether toddlers' imitation performance from television would be facilitated if verbal labels were presented on television via voice-over or if they were presented by parents who were co-viewing with their toddlers. Sixty-one 2-year olds were randomly assigned to one of four experimental groups (voice-over video, parent video, parent video no label, parent live) or to a baseline control condition. Toddlers were tested with novel objects after a 24h delay. Although, all experimental groups imitated significantly more target actions than the baseline control group, imitation was facilitated by novel labels regardless of whether those labels were provided by parents or by voice-over on television. These findings have important implications for toddler learning from television.
Business models for children's media The handbook of children, media, and development
  • A Kalagian
  • T Lyon
, A., Kalagian, T., & Lyon, C. (2008). Business models for children's media. In S. L. Calvert, & B. J. Wilson (Eds.), The handbook of children, media, and development (pp. 27–48). Malden, MA: Blackwell.
Identity on the Internet
  • S L Calvert
Calvert, S. L. (2002). Identity on the Internet. In S. L. Calvert, A. B. Jordan, & R. R. Cocking (Eds.), Children in the digital age: Influences of electronic media on development (pp. 57–70). Westport, CT: Praeger.
Children's parasocial relationships with media characters Media and the well being of children and adolescents
  • S L Calvert
  • M N Richards
Calvert, S. L., & Richards, M. N. (2014). Children's parasocial relationships with media characters. In J. Bossert (Oxford Ed). In A. Jordan, & D. Romer (Eds.), Media and the well being of children and adolescents. Oxford, UK: Oxford University Press.