Kids learn from the familiar

Over on Kidscreen they have an article talking about how “Researchers from the Children’s Digital Media Center at Georgetown University have found that toddlers performed a sequencing task better when an Elmo toy puppet demonstrated it than when an unfamiliar puppet performed the same exact task.

The study, Toddlers Learning from Socially Meaningful Video Characters, suggests that the social relationships that children develop with a character matter, even for toddlers.”

This made me think some on how many children’s ministries may be under valuing some of their character time during each service? How many have a regular or a few regular characters that come out but we are not using them to ‘teach’ or ‘bring home’ the lesson, instead we use them for just the fun outlandish type spots.

In this post on kidscreen it notes that: “The study says that when a character such as Elmo is socially meaningful to children, less working memory may be needed to process who that character is, and therefore, more memory can be devoted to mastering the task at hand.”

How can you possibly make some adjustments in how you use regular characters that the kids have developed a socially meaning relationship with? If you are doing this could you explain how you are accomplishing this? Post pictures as well if you have them.

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