At home

Talking to children about pornography: Five insights

Jessica Zurcher had an experience that led her to conduct 33 qualitative interviews regarding parent–child pornography communication. This post draws on those interviews to offer five suggestions for talking with children about pornography, advocating for an approach with open communication and discussion. Jessica is an assistant professor in the School of Communications, Brigham Young University, USA. She researches new […]

Screen time for kids: Getting the balance right

Because it is #nationalplayday today, and children are out of school for summer holidays, we are discussing strategies for managing screen-time.  This post features an infographic created by Sonia Livingstone and Alicia Blum-Ross, together with the Connected Learning Alliance, which addresses more effective methods for parents than simply ‘watching the clock’.  Sonia is Professor of Social Psychology at LSE’s Department of Media […]

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    The Internet of Toys: Implications of increased connectivity and convergence of physical and digital play in young children

The Internet of Toys: Implications of increased connectivity and convergence of physical and digital play in young children

How are children’s play objects shaped by technological inventions? As toys become increasingly connected online, Bieke Zaman, Donell Holloway and Leila Green research the ‘Internet of Toys’. The the data they report in this post show that parents generally welcome these changes because they offer new ways of playing, learning, and the possibility of extreme personalization. Bieke Zaman is associated with mintlab and researches how […]

Learning or loafing – watching summer TV

Now that children are out of school for the summer, parents and carers will inevitably turn to a screen (of some sort) to keep children occupied. How can this be a productive, learning and enriching time for children even when in front of a screen? Alicia Blum-Ross encourages parents and carers to let children experiment, play, and relax this summer, […]

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    ‘Pop-ups and pull-outs: How digital books offer children an experience of ‘materiality’

‘Pop-ups and pull-outs: How digital books offer children an experience of ‘materiality’

How have digital books changed the reading experience for children? As summertime is a prime season for parents to read to, or read with their children, in this post Natalia Kucirkova outlines the factors that affect ‘reading for pleasure’ in the context of digital books. Natalia argues that digital books have reinvigorated interest in the ‘materiality’ of children’s reading, […]

Understanding fatherhood in the digital age

In this blog, Gillian Ranson looks into the rise of the father blogger. Recognising their growing impact, she reflects on the role of father bloggers with advertising as they become a potential source of revenue, as well as their position as ‘parent experts’ who are professionalised as fathers. Gillian is Professor Emerita of Sociology at the University of Calgary, Canada. She is […]

The trouble with ‘screen time rules’

How much is too much when it comes to ‘screen time’? Sonia Livingstone and Alicia Blum-Ross round-up the advice that is being given to parents about screen time rules, where reports represent advice on a scale from fear to hype. Rather than measuring screentime purely by the clock, Alicia and Sonia suggest a set of lifestyle-based questions that can help […]

Augmented reality apps: value beyond the hype?

Jackie Marsh discusses the research she conducted about augmented reality apps, investigating their use, value and potential for young children. She urges that as these apps become increasingly ubiquitous, it will be important for parents and early years practitioners to appraise and assess the apps and decide whether they are of fleeting interest, or if they hold the potential […]

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    Call for regulation on securing children’s data in personalised reading

Call for regulation on securing children’s data in personalised reading

While children’s reading experience is being transformed with digital reading formats, personalised and interactive books allowing for more personalisation, there are risks around the data this releases. Natalia Kucirkova and Rosie Flewitt identify four main areas of concern and call for regulation. Natalia is Senior Research Associate, and Rosie is Reader in Early Communication and Learning, both at University College London, […]

The ‘joys’ of digital media in new parenting

Maja Sonne Damkjaer explores how new parents are using digital media in their transition to parenthood. As new parents engage with media such as pregnancy calendars and social media such as Facebook, Maja suggests that it is now necessary for parents to decide on a parental communication strategy as they navigate these digital contexts. Maja is a research assistant […]