Parliament

Gordon Campbell | Parliament TV | Parliament Today | Video | Questions Of the Day | Search

 

First NZ Study on effects of screen-time on pre-schoolers


Hon Carmel Sepuloni

Minister for Social Development
18 January 2018 MEDIA STATEMENT
First NZ Study on effects of screen-time on pre-school children

Obesity, poorer motor skills, hyperactivity problems and poor sleep are just some of the effects that may be experienced by pre-school children who exceed New Zealand’s screen-time guidelines, according to a study funded by the Ministry of Social Development’s Children and Families Research Fund.

Minister for Social Development Carmel Sepuloni welcomed the report, the first to analyse New Zealand data, saying its findings show that adhering to the government’s screen time guidelines is linked to better health profiles in New Zealand children.

“Until now, we’ve had to rely on overseas evidence about the effects of screen time on pre-schoolers. This new report provides robust local data that supports the Ministry of Health’s Active Play Guidelines for under-fives,” Carmel Sepuloni said.

The Ministry of Health Guidelines are:

• no sedentary screen time for children younger than 2 years

• less than an hour each day for children aged between 2 and 5 years

Researchers at the Auckland University of Technology (AUT) and the University of Auckland analysed screen-time data from more than 5,000 participants from the Growing Up in New Zealand study as they aged from 24 to 54 months.

They found that the average time preschool children spent using screens is about 1.5 hours each day at 2 years of age, increasing to two hours per day when children were 3.75 years of age.



This study showed that children who exceeded the one hour per day screen time guidelines at age 2 years, are more likely to be obese, visit the doctor more, have lower physical motor skills, and may exhibit hyperactivity problems when they reached around 4.5 years.

“Children have unprecedented access to screen based devices – from smart phones to televisions and tablets. While some screen time can be beneficial for learning, that time needs to be balanced with regular physical activity and outside play, which we know are key to children’s development,” Carmel Sepuloni said.

“The findings will contribute to the well-being of our children in the future by raising awareness among parents and carers about the importance of limiting young children’s screen time.

“I look forward to the release of more research using the Growing Up In New Zealand (GUINZ) data. It is the country’s largest longitudinal study of child development gathering information over time about what it’s like to grow up in 21st century New Zealand,” Carmel Sepuloni said.

The Government restored more than $1.9 million of funding to the Growing Up in New Zealand study last year, after funding was cut by the previous Government.

“The extra funding allowed the Growing Up in New Zealand team to restore the sample from 2,000 back to its original size of 6,800, allowing for more detailed analysis and understanding of how we can make New Zealand the best place to be a child.” Carmel Sepuloni said.

Through the Children and Families Research Fund, $750,000 is made available each year for policy-relevant research projects using Growing Up in New Zealand data.

Read the full report here.

ends


© Scoop Media

 
 
 
Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines

SCOOP COVERAGE: CHRISTCHURCH MOSQUES TERROR ATTACK


Emission Statement: 'Consensus Reached' On Agriculture

Today the Government launched a consultation document, informed by the work of the Interim Climate Change Committee (ICCC), on how to bring agriculture into the emissions trading scheme, a key part of the Government’s plan to tackle climate change and reduce New Zealand’s emissions.

Agricultural emissions make up nearly half of New Zealand’s total emissions profile and are the largest contributor to greenhouse gas emissions in New Zealand. More>>

 

Gordon Campbell: On What’s Wrong With Wellington

For many Wellingtonians, it hasn’t been the normal hardships – the workings of central government and the lousy weather – that have recently pushed their tolerance into the red zone. It has been the inability of local government to maintain even the basics. More>>

ALSO:

$1m Compensation Paid: First Gun Ban Event In Christchurch

The Police Minister says the first ever firearms collection event in Christchurch over the weekend was a huge success. But Stuart Nash had concerns about whether the participation reflected the number of weapons in the region. More>>

ALSO:

The Kids: Youth Parliament 2019 Event Kicks Off

120 Youth MPs and 20 Youth Press Gallery members have gathered in Wellington to attend the two-day Youth Parliament event ... More>>

Friends Like These: Foreign Minister To Visit USA

Deputy Prime Minister and Foreign Affairs Minister Winston Peters will travel to Washington D.C. today for talks with senior members of the US Administration, and to attend the Ministerial to Advance Religious Freedom. More>>

ALSO:

Gordon Campbell: On The Aussie Banks’ Latest Fee Hike Excuse

When the Reserve Bank sought feedback on its plans to require the country’s major banks to raise their capital reserves then you might have expected the banks to whine and complain. And so they have. More>>

ALSO:

Sitting On Defence: Terms Of Reference For Defence Estate Review

“The 81,000 hectare Defence estate is at a crossroads; much of it is run down, and outdated,” says Ron Mark. “It needs to be improved in order to gain, train and retain our service people, now and into the future." More>>

ALSO:

Meng Foon: Retiring Gisborne Mayor To Be Race Relations Commissioner

Andrew Little: “He has an outstanding record as a relationship builder and walks comfortably in the pākehā world, the Māori world, the Chinese community and other communities making up New Zealand." More>>

ALSO:

NCEA: Students Granted Qualifications After Fees Scrapped

Almost 150,000 current and former students with unpaid NCEA fees have today been formally awarded their NCEA credits or qualifications. More>>

 
 
 
 
 

LATEST HEADLINES

  • PARLIAMENT
  • POLITICS
  • REGIONAL
 
 

InfoPages News Channels