Kids wore video cameras in their preschool class, for science

Posted on September 16, 2019

Researchers were interested in their linguistic environment – how were children exposed to language in the class – and researchers found that the duration and frequency of kid’s interactions with teachers and peers was very different among children. Overall, children interacted more with the teacher than their peers, but for some children their peers were an additional source of hearing language. And this was something that researchers were not able to learn from traditional studies.

The children wore the wireless head-mounted camera on a randomly assigned day during a 4-hour period. They wore it for one hour in the morning, during which they participated in different kinds of activities: some involving the whole class and some where the kids were free to choose what to do in various centers around the classroom.

Afterwards, researchers analysed the videos to see how many times each child interacted with the teacher or peer, how long their interacted lasted and the variety of aspects of the interaction. Overall, about 60% of the interactions caught on video were with the teacher. And the total duration of interactions with teachers was almost 3 times longer than the interactions with the peers. 80% of the time when someone was talking directly to the child wearing the camera, it was the teacher. The children also heard more sophisticated language from their teachers with 92% of the time.

The data from the camera study will be used in future studies to model the social network in the classroom and examine how kids resolve conflicts with each other. Researchers participating in the project are experimenting with other technologies, like location sensors to see how kids move around classrooms and interact with their peers.

The researchers had goals to map the dimensions of the classroom experience, including relationships with teachers and peers, how much kids enjoy schools and if they are victimised by other children.

Category(s):Child Development

Source material from Science Daily

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