Tune In to Find Out if Your Child Is Developing Normally
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"Then obviously, you get into the other set of issues: whether children
who are very young should be watching television at all," she says.
"While the [American] Academy of Pediatrics and many pediatricians do not
feel that young children should be watching TV, I think there are much better
ways to be determining how well your child is doing developmentally. We are
much bigger proponents of reading books to your children and having your
children identify pictures rather than things on TV as a better way of teaching
your child and knowing whether your child is learning what you are
Lloyd says he is aware that promoting the use of television as a diagnostic
tool is controversial, especially in light of the American Academy of
Pediatrics' recent recommendation that children under the age of 2 watch no
television at all.
"Other pediatricians have said to me, 'You are sending the wrong message
with this test,'" says Lloyd. "On a bad day you could imagine that some
mother will hear about this, spot that her 16-month-old child isn't doing it,
and then sit the child in front of the television for four hours as therapy.
This is my nightmare scenario."
"Of course whether the child has normal development or not, they are
better off not plopped in front of the television," says Lloyd. "In
fact, as a result of this, I talk about the dangers of excessive television
- New research shows that by 18 months of age, 96% of children can recognize
a cat, dog, or baby on a television screen, but only 19% of Down's syndrome
children can do this.
- Researchers say this diagnostic tool can help determine whether a young
child has a learning problem, but other experts question the validity of this
- One problem with this tool is that children under the age of 2 should not
even be watching television, according to guidelines from the American Academy