Toddlers today may learn a lot from interactive digital media such as video chats, mobile applications that require them to respond, compared to television or videos that do not interact with them.
Heather Kirkorian, associate professor of human development and family studies at the University of Wisconsin, Madison studied the impact of interactive media on toddlers and preschoolers.
Interactive media help children to connect to what they see on a screen to their experience in the world. Children engage cognitively while watching television, but they find it difficult to comprehend what they are watching on television before the age of 2 or 3 years. On the other hand, interactive digital media works along with the child's responses. One of the main reasons being the videos are two-dimensional and lacks feedback.
Kirkorian in a statement said, "Research is just beginning to address how children learn from interactive digital media, but interactivity appears to help young children connect what they see on a screen to their experience in the world."
She further added, "However, some types of interactivity are more beneficial than others, and optimal conditions for learning may vary considerably from person to person."
"The extent to which young children learn from screen media depends on, among other things, the intersection between the cognitive demands of a particular learning task and each child's cognitive resources," said Kirkorian on interactive learning and the ability of the kids to learn from such platforms. The study is published in the journal, Child Development Perspectives.