19 November 2006

Watch closed-captioned TV while the kids are asleep

In: Sleep

Stefania (of CityMama, Kimchi Mamas, Parents Connect and more) sez:

We watch TV with closed captioning on when we don't want to wake the kids.  Same for movies--especially movies that are heavy on dialog.  We do keep the sound on as well, but we don't have to turn it up to hear what the actors are saying.

I read on a blog somewhere that closed-captioning can help kids learn to read, too.

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We use closed captioning to watch movies when the kids are *awake*, for similar reasons: We don't have to crank up the volume to hear the dialog over the kids playing in the other room.

i'm always surprised that more people don't do this! we do this all the time - so as not to miss dialogue.

I've been doing this since he was born - definitely a great idea ;).

My wife and I don't have kids, but we almost always use the captions. We're not hard of hearing, but it's surprising how much dialogue we miss if we don't use the captions. They can be distracting at first, but you get used to them quickly. You can even carry on a conversation while watching because it's possible to read captions (whereas you might not be able to actually hear the dialogue).

My 3 year old son is hyperlexic/APD/HFA --can't find the breaks in spoken words-- he's really benefited from closed captioning, lots more original speech.

I use closed captioning every day, dating back long before I had a baby. It's good when a vacuum cleaner is running, when someone else is talking on the phone, or you just can't understand what a character on TV is saying. We just leave the captions on by default. We also sometimes catch background chatter or descriptions of noises or titles of music that wouldn't be so obvious from casual viewing.

Unfortunately, the FCC has begun granting TV programs permanent exemptions from providing closed captioning. Expect to see less and less of this extremely useful feature. Steps taken to make a more accessible society benefit everyone, not just people perceived to be disabled.

For shame. Folks, there is no such thing as "good TV" for kids. The way that TV displays images tricks the brain and there's plenty of research that indicates that merely watching television shortens a kid's attention span, weakens his/her ability to concentrate and may actually be a root cause of ADHD.

The best way to teach your kids to read is to read to them.

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