Do you see the use of specific things like computers as part of an early childhood curriculum as being powerful enough to change brain development the same way you’ve just described television?
Dr. Perry: Absolutely. I think the difference between computers and television is that television tends to be quite passive. You sit and you are watching and things are happening in front of you but you don’t do anything. Children are natural “manipulators” of the world — they learn through controlling the movement and interactions between objects in their world — dolls, blocks, toy cars, their own bodies. With television, they watch and do not control anything. Computers allow interaction. Children can control the pace and activity and make things happen on computers. They can also repeat an activity again and again if they choose.
By Kimberly Moore Kneas, Ph.D. and Bruce D. Perry, M.D., Ph.D.