Tag Archives: Study

TV may take biggest toll on school readiness for poor kids

Kevin Lachaise, 8, watches a recorded TV show through the screen of a computer at the living room of his home in downtown Havana February 10, 2015. REUTERS/Alexandre Meneghini

By Lisa Rapaport

(Reuters Health) – – Doctors often tell parents of young children to limit television time because it can interfere with learning and language development. Now, a U.S. study suggests TV’s impact on school readiness might be worse for poor kids than for more affluent children.

Researchers examined test results for 807 kids between 5 and 6 years old assessed at the start of kindergarten for basic skills like counting, letter recognition and sorting blocks by pattern and shape. They also looked at parent surveys about how much time each day kids spent watching traditional television sets or other screens. Read more »

Working moms have more successful daughters and more caring sons

By: Gabriel Fisher

The guilt many working mothers confess to may be real, but it’s looking less and less warranted.

According to a working paper (pdf) published June 19 by the Harvard Business School, daughters of working mothers are more likely to be employed, hold supervisory positions, and earn more money than the daughters of women who don’t work outside the home. The researchers also found a statistically significant effect on the sons of working women, who are likely to spend more time caring for family members and doing household chores than are the sons of stay-at-home mothers. Read more »

It is time to bust the myth of physical inactivity and obesity: you cannot outrun a bad diet

A Malhotra, T Noakes and S Phinney

A recent report from the UK’s Academy of Medical Royal Colleges described ‘the miracle cure’ of performing 30 min of moderate exercise, five times a week, as more powerful than many drugs administered for chronic disease prevention and management.1 Regular physical activity reduces the risk of developing cardiovascular disease, type 2 diabetes, dementia and some cancers by at least 30%. However, physical activity does not promote weight loss. Read more »

Want people to trust you? Try apologising for the rain

If you want people to see you as trustworthy, try apologising for situations outside of your control such as the rain or a transport delay. That’s the implication of a new study by researchers at Harvard Business School and Wharton School,University of Pennsylvania.

The most compelling evidence came from Alison Brooks and her colleagues’ fourth and final study in which a male actor approached 65 strangers (30 women) at a train station on a rainy day to ask to borrow their mobile phone. Crucially, for half of them he preceded his request with the superfluous apology: “I’m sorry about the rain!” The other half of the time he just came straight out with his request: “Can I borrow your cell phone?” The superfluous apology made a big difference. Forty-seven per cent of strangers offered their phone when the actor apologised for the rain first, compared with just nine per cent when there was no apology.
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“Geek” Versus “Nerd”

To many people, “geek” and “nerd” are synonyms, but in fact they are a little different. Consider the phrase “sports geek” — an occasional substitute for “jock” and perhaps the arch-rival of a “nerd” in high-school folklore. If “geek” and “nerd” are synonyms, then “sports geek” might be an oxymoron. (Furthermore, “sports nerd” either doesn’t compute or means something else.)

In my mind, “geek” and “nerd” are related, but capture different dimensions of an intense dedication to a subject:


  • geek – An enthusiast of a particular topic or field. Geeks are “collection” oriented, gathering facts and mementos related to their subject of interest. They are obsessed with the newest, coolest, trendiest things that their subject has to offer.
  • nerd A studious intellectual, although again of a particular topic or field. Nerds are “achievement” oriented, and focus their efforts on acquiring knowledge and skill over trivia and memorabilia.


Or, to put it pictorially à la The Simpsons:
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