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

Gordon Campbell: On The Anti-Corbyn Split In British Labour

The resignation of seven UK Labour MPs in protest against the leadership of Jeremy Corbyn is another example of the centre-left’s readiness to sabotage its own cause – such things are always allegedly done on principle – even if the outcome hands the country over to Conservative rule for five more years.

Certainly, a technician hot-miked at the splitters’ press conference was pretty sure this would now be the outcome, and he accidentally informed the nation to that effect. More>>

 
 

Auckland Action Against Poverty: Motels Profit From Housing Crisis

A single motel which charges up to $1,500 per week per room has received over $3 million worth of Government funds to provide emergency assistance, despite never having a Code Compliance Certificate – an offence under the Building Act – and receiving a series of longstanding complaints from occupants... More>>

ALSO:

Gordon Campbell: On The Alleged China Relations Crisis

If New Zealand’s relations with China are ‘deteriorating’ then you still need a microscope to detect the signs... More>>

ALSO:

Environment: Government To End Tenure Review

“Tenure review has resulted in parcels of land being added to the conservation estate, but it has also resulted in more intensive farming and subdivision on the 353,000 ha of land which has been freeholded. This contributed to major landscape change and loss of habitat for native plants and animals,” said Eugenie Sage. More>>

ALSO:

Bell Tolls: Big Changes, Grand Mergers Planned For Vocational Training

“At a time when we’re facing critical skill shortages, too many of our polytechnics and institutes of technology are going broke... More>>

ALSO:

Sallies' State Of The Nation: Progress Stalled In Reducing Inequality

The report shows a lack of tangible progress in key areas including record levels of household debt and a growing gap in educational achievement between poorer and more well off communities. More>>

ALSO:

Party Politics In Tax Morale Survey: SSC To Seek Answers From IRD

Minister of State Services Chris Hipkins has today asked the State Services Commissioner Peter Hughes to examine IRD’s reported inappropriate use of a public survey. More>>

ALSO:

 
 
 
 
 

LATEST HEADLINES

  • PARLIAMENT
  • POLITICS
  • REGIONAL
 
 

InfoPages News Channels