Worried your children are spending too much time in front of the television? Well, watching films not only has educational benefits, it also helps their minds get more exercise than originally thought.
A new study by Massey’s School of Educational Studies in Australia, found that repeatedly watching favourite films actually helps children learn.
“When children engage with films, they absorb lots of detail about the dialogues, the characters, and they’re immersed in the action. They have a very good depth of knowledge about stories, which again shows valuable learning.
Finch and his team used the second film in the Harry Potter series, Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets, to focus on children’s behaviour and depth of understanding when viewing a film repeatedly.
A school-based survey of favourite films produced 17 children who nominated the film as a favourite that they had seen at least 10 times.
Pairs of children were taped while watching the film again. Viewing practices varied, with some pairs talking and gesturing to the screen and each other and other pairs moving and saying little throughout.
“Gestures were not only at the literal level of mimicking characters’ actions but also at the personalised engagement level where they elaborated on characters’ emotional states, which were not being overtly expressed onscreen.