Viacom Unveils Findings From Global Study “Little Big Kids: Preschoolers Ready For Life”
New Research Released by Viacom, Home to the Preeminent Kids Brand Around the World, Nickelodeon
Study Shows Parents Prioritize Learning Through Play, Tactical Tech Time, and Enabling Experiences
Wednesday, February 15, 2017 3:29 pm EST
Viacom Inc. (NASDAQ: VIAB, VIA), today announced a new global study LITTLE BIG KIDS: PRESCHOOLERS READY FOR LIFE. The research takes a closer look at preschoolers (kids ages two to five) and how their families are preparing them for an ever-changing future. From a shift in parenting trends to the expanding role of technology, LITTLE BIG KIDS offers insights into how preschoolers are growing and learning today.
LITTLE BIG KIDS highlighted three important trends in current preschool parenting:
Learning Through Doing
LITTLE BIG KIDS revealed a shift away from a more sheltered or “helicopter” style of parenting to parents preparing preschoolers for life in an uncertain world by exposing them to a variety of experiences. 74 percent of parents globally believe that children should learn through their own experiences, and 68 percent believe one of the most important developmental opportunities for preschoolers is learning to do things for themselves. In fact, 70 percent of parents say they always listen to their child’s opinion before making a decision that affects them. This can range from what’s for dinner to whether the family moves to a different city.
Additionally, the top two reasons parents send their two to five year olds to preschool are centered on peer-to-peer development:
- #1 (at 76 percent) - Socializing with other children.
- #2 (at 65 percent) - Learning to share and communicate with others.
Learning Through Play
Viacom’s research also showed that parents are prioritizing play more than ever, with 72 percent saying they believe their preschoolers learn best through play. In fact, that same percentage believes that learning through play is even more important than traditional learning at this age.
Learning Through Tech
Around the world, technology and devices are seen by parents as tools to prepare their preschoolers for life. 64 percent of parents agree it’s important for their kids to keep up with tech developments, and 65 percent of preschoolers have access to a tablet – which they interact with an average of 1.3 hours per day. In fact, globally, preschoolers spend about 14 hours per week on devices, although this number varies dramatically from region to region (with the US at the highest end of the spectrum at 25 hours, and Germany at the lowest at six hours).
However, while parents are embracing the role of technology in their children’s lives, it’s not without caution. 61 percent of parents worry about their kids coming across inappropriate content, 53 percent think too much time is spent on devices can interfere with learning and development, and 79 percent of parents say they limit the amount of time their child spends on devices. Overall, though, the perceived benefit of technology outweighs these concerns, with 52 percent of parents saying their kids use tablets for educational content – a number which rises to 67 percent in the Philippines – and 61 saying they think technology is making their kids smarter.
For this study, researchers at Viacom spoke with nearly 6,500 families – mothers, fathers, grandparents, and siblings – of preschoolers across 12 countries through digital diaries, an online survey, and in-home ethnographies. Countries included: Australia, Brazil, Germany, Mexico, Netherlands, Philippines, Poland, Russia, South Africa, Sweden, the United Kingdom, and the United States. Additionally, Viacom outfitted preschoolers with action cameras to literally see the world through their eyes as they explored, learned, and played.
NOTES TO THE EDITOR:
To find out more about Little Big Kids and Viacom Insights, please go to: insights.viacom.com
Viacom is home to premier global media brands that create compelling television programs, motion pictures, short-form content, apps, games, consumer products, social media experiences, and other entertainment content for audiences in more than 180 countries. Viacom's media networks, including Nickelodeon, Comedy Central, MTV, VH1, Spike, BET, CMT, TV Land, Nick at Nite, Nick Jr., Logo, Nicktoons, TeenNick, Channel 5 (UK), Telefe (Argentina) and Paramount Channel, reach over 3.9 billion cumulative television subscribers worldwide. Paramount Pictures is a major global producer and distributor of filmed entertainment. For more information about Viacom and its businesses, visit www.viacom.com. Keep up with Viacom news by following Viacom's blog at blog.viacom.com and Twitter feed at www.twitter.com/viacom.
Also, via Kidscreen:
Viacom study shows shift away from helicopter parenting
Presented today at Kidscreen Summit, new preschool research from Viacom Insights reveals that overprotective parenting is on the way out as learning from technology increases.
Call it iPhone independence: A new study from Viacom’s global consumer insights division has found that preschoolers are becoming increasingly self-sufficient, largely due to a slight decrease in helicopter parenting and a rise in learning through mobile devices and technology.
Little Big Kids: Preschoolers Ready For Life, officially presented by Viacom’s global consumer insights SVP, Christian Kurz, at Kidscreen Summit in Miami today, surveyed 6,500 families of preschoolers ages two to five across 12 countries—the US, the UK, Australia, Brazil, Germany, Mexico, Russia, the Philippines, South Africa, Poland, Sweden and the Netherlands.
Insights were gathered through a number of methods including digital diaries, an online survey, in-home ethnographies and a GoPro point-of-view experiment where preschoolers were outfitted with cameras to capture their daily play, exploration and learning patterns.
The biggest takeaway from the research, according to Kurz, is a movement slightly away from a more sheltered style of parenting to an ideology wherein parents prepare preschoolers for life in an uncertain world. This is accomplished, in many cases, by exposing kids to a variety of experiences.
“Parents don’t know what they’re preparing their kids for, but they need tools to help them cope with whatever life may throw their way. And helicopter parenting isn’t necessarily seen as the best way to do this anymore,” says Kurz. “Instead, what we’re seeing is parents are getting their kids ready for life through experiences and controlled risk taking.”
The study found that 75% of parents believe children should learn through their own experiences, while 68% think one of the most important developmental opportunities for preschoolers is learning to do things for themselves.
In fact, 70% of parents say they always listen to their child’s opinion before making decisions that affect them, like what’s for dinner or whether the family moves to a different city.
“Additionally, the top two reasons parents send their two- to five-year-olds to preschool are centered on peer-to-peer development,” says Kurz. “And within this, learning through play is still very much prioritized. In fact, 72% of parents say they believe their preschoolers learn best through play. The same percentage believes that learning through play is even more important than traditional learning at this age.”
As for the impact of technology on today’s preschoolers, the research found that 64% of parents agree it’s important for their kids to keep up with tech developments.
“This is particularly relevant…because three quarters of the jobs that today’s preschoolers are going to be working in do not yet exist,” says Kurz.
Looking at mobile device access and usage, 65% of preschoolers have access to a tablet, with which they interact an average of 1.3 hours per day.
Globally, preschoolers spend about 14 hours per week on devices, although time spent varies dramatically by region. For instance, the US has the highest per week usage at 25 hours, while Germany posts the lowest at six hours.
However, while parents are accepting of their kids’ technological needs, 61% worry about their children coming across inappropriate content online, and 53% believe that too much time spent on devices can interfere with learning and development.
Nearly 80%, in fact, say they limit the amount of time their child spends on devices.
“Overall, though, the perceived benefit of technology outweighs these concerns, with 52% of parents saying their kids use tablets for educational content—a number that rises to 67% in the Philippines,” says Kurz.
“One of the mothers of one of the preschoolers we met there was incredibly proud because her daughter learned how to count to 10 and learned her ABCs in both Filipino and English from her tablet.”
According to the study, 61% of parents think technology is making their kids smarter.
More information about Little Big Kids and Viacom Insights can be found here.
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