NZ Herald: Screens ‘damaging young brains’

Simon Collins writes in the New Zealand Herald about claims by a psychologist that computers are bad for children’s social and educational development, and shouldn’t be used by children under 9.

Dr Aric Signman, who became well-known for research suggesting that television was bad for children’s brain development, and is now citing research showing that children aged 10-15 who have computers, have poor maths and reading abilities than those who don’t.

An excerpt: (read in full here)

“He concluded that children needed to learn about the real world before they could benefit from computers.

“”They have to upload information about the real three-dimensional world before they start manipulating it in the virtual world.”

“Direct face-to-face communication was also vital to the development of language and empathy – an ability to understand and care about people other than yourself.

“”How do children learn how to speak, how to enter a conversation, how to pronounce words?” he asked. “It is all linked to face-to-face contact because they need to see the facial muscles moving in their parents’ faces.

“”There are biological effects of aspirated words causing air pressure on the skin of children and hearing harmonics that don’t come across through technologies.””