Storybooks often present information that can be applied to the real world. For example, after children see a picture of a zebra in a storybook, they might recognize a real zebra in a zoo. However, even realistic information in storybooks is often presented in a fantasy context (e.g., the zebra in the book may be able to talk to other characters). In this study, we want to know whether realistic or fantasy storylines affect what children learn from picture storybooks.
In this study, 2-5 year-old children listen to some stories about animals. The stories may contain either fantastical information (e.g., a mouse flying an airplane) or realistic information (e.g., a bird feeding a baby bird). After children hear the stories, we ask them some questions about things that the animals do or don’t do in reality. We want to know whether the language used in the storybooks will affect how children apply what they heard in the story to a real situation.
We predict that toddlers, but not older children, may have difficulty applying what they hear in a fantastical storybooks to real animals.
This study will help us understand what children learn from picture storybooks, and how they apply what they see and read to the real world.
Learn about other research related to Learning From Others.
This research is conducted by the Language and Learning Lab at Boston University