What Really Counts in the “Word Gap Count”?

Fred Rogers understood that early language development is important for a child’s ability to relate to the world and the people in it. Fred believed words help children better understand and manage their “inner drama.”  “What is mentionable is more manageable,” he would often say. Fred also understood that conversation between child and adult is critical for children’s intellectual and emotional...

Read More

Communicating, Collaborating and Creating Change at Fred Forward

This post was originally published at the Joan Ganz Cooney Center, and appears here with permission.  This spring, I was given an extremely exciting opportunity when the Fred Rogers Center named me an Early Career Fellow. The mission of the Fred Rogers Center is to advance the fields of early learning and children’s media by acting as a catalyst for communication,...

Read More

Why the Screen Debate Needs to Happen at App Level

To engage in real debate, critics of screen time need to name the apps they are concerned about, argues Children's Technology Review Editor Warren Buckleitner, a presenter at the 2014 Fred Forward Conference. He names 10 specific research questions about kids and apps. The Great Screen Debate is stuck. Despite the forward thinking of the joint position statement on children and...

Read More

Contrary to Claims, Not All Media Is Bad For Kids Under 12

It's been quite a week in the children's media world. While preparing for the week ahead last Sunday, I noticed an article on Huffington Post that was spreading virally through my friends on Facebook. The article was a call to ban all hand-held devices from children under the age of 12. Backing up the claim, the author cited a long...

Read More

Playing Online

You may have heard young children in your life talking about time they spent online on sites like Webkinz or Club Penguin and you may wonder why your 7-year-old niece, for example, keeps going back for more. Virtual worlds are immersive 2-D or 3-D spaces in which users adopt an avatar, or online character, in order to represent themselves and interact...

Read More

What Parents and Care Providers Need to Know When Choosing Tech For Young Children

Experts in media and young children agree; how the youngest children use technology—ideally, with caregivers and with an eye on their learning and development—is more important than how old they are when they start. It’s the latest in baby gear, and it’s got everybody talking. The Fisher-Price iPad Apptivity Seat is a reclining baby seat with a toy bar and a...

Read More

Paul Tough on Stress and Children’s Success

Recently, author Paul Tough was the Saint Vincent College Threshold Series lecturer, as the opening event  in celebration of the Fred Rogers Center’s 10th anniversary. Tough’s recent book, “How Children Succeed,” explains the brain science behind the toxic effects of long-term stress on young children and how to prevent and undo the harm it produces. Fred Rogers knew the importance of...

Read More