ANOTHER LOOK AT CHILDREN'S COMPREHENSION OF TELEVISION
AbstractResearch on children's comprehension of television suggests that very young children have difficulty ordering major scenes from a story, and generally do not have adultlike understandings of television. More recent research with young children using short and simple stimuli and a method designed to maximize children's communication abilities suggests that these earlier studies may have underestimated children's comprehension. In this study, three- to five-year-olds viewed an 8-minute version of Diff'rent Strokes, and then were asked to reenact the story with dolls and appropriate props. Analyses of the quality of the stories showed that 70% of the children comprehended most of the event clusters of the program. While their versions of the story were not nearly as detailed or rich as adults' versions, they did not indicate that the children had constructed qualitatively different meanings from the story.