All those warnings that watching too much television damages children’s academic performance are plain wrong, according to new research from London University’s Institute of Education.
The new study has found that children who are glued to the screen for hours every day significantly outperform classmates who watch less, the Daily Mail reports.
While TV has always been accused of damaging young brains, youngsters who watch for three or more hours a day are three months ahead of those who watch less than an hour a day. The research, part of the Millenium Cohort Study, used test results for 11,000 British seven year-olds who have been tracked since birth.
Dr. Alice Sullivan, the report’s lead author, admitted that the results were ‘contrary to expectations’ but suggested that the educational value of children’s education had been ‘underestimated’.
Other academics doubt the findings. Professor Frank Furedi from the University of Kent said: “Parents’ intuition will tell them there are better things to be doing than sitting in front of a screen.” Literacy specialist Sue Palmer added: “If TV becomes the default activity for young children, they are less likely to become rounded individuals.”
As a teacher, do you think this research is credible? If you’re a parent, do you welcome the news that you no longer need to limit the amount of time your children spend watching TV?