Costumes Make the Stories Stick

Study found dressing up helped children remember tales better

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FRIDAY, Jan. 31, 2003 (HealthDayNews) -- The next time you walk over to the bookshelf to find a story to read to your child, you might also want to make a trip to the costume box.

A Kansas State University study says using costumes to supplement a book helps preschool children remember the story better.

The study had two parts. First, the two researchers read a story to a child, who then had to retell it to the researchers. In the next part, the child used a costume to retell the story.

The researchers then compared the story retellings in terms of how well the children could recall characters and the story sequence. They found that when the children used costumes, they could recall the story much better than without costumes.

The researchers are currently doing a second study in a classroom-like setting. A teacher reads two stories to a class of preschool children. For one of the stories, costumes are put in the dress-up area.

More information

Here's where parents can get some advice on helping develop their children's literacy skills.

SOURCE: Kansas State University, news release, Jan. 30, 2003


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