Tag Archives: children

Signs of the dietary environment

School-aged children are surrounded by messages about food and nutrition, from shop signs to brand advertising. Linguists from Indonesia and Australia have developed a new way of studying how this affects them, using smartphones and clever analysis.

In a project financed by the Australia- Indonesia Centre and led by Dr Sisilia Halimi of Universitas Indonesia and Professor Lesley Harbon of the University of Technology Sydney, researchers used their phones to take pictures of the ‘linguistic landscape’ around schools and their surrounds, in fact anywhere written text was evident.

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A five-in-one vaccine for all Indonesian children

Indonesia is rolling out a five-in-one vaccine that they plan to deliver in a single shot to every Indonesian child to protect them against diphtheria, tetanus, whooping cough, hepatitis B and Haemophilus influenzae type B (Hib).

The rollout is supported by the Australian Government through GAVI, the global vaccine alliance. The vaccine is manufactured by Bio Farma, who also hope to add rotavirus to the vaccines in the future.

Collaborating to combat killers

Indonesian and Australian researchers are working together to combat two big killers: pneumonia, and tuberculosis.

Around six million young Indonesians catch pneumonia each year, according to a 2008 study, and it’s the number one killer of children under five. Researchers now think there might be a link to how much time kids are spending out in the sunshine—more specifically, their level of vitamin D.

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Language – nature or nurture?

Why can children learn any language – is it nature or nurture? Using the world’s first magnetoencephalography (MEG) system designed to study cognitive processing in children, Macquarie University Federation Fellow Professor Stephen Crain will investigate whether or not children have innate language ability.

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Imaginary friends, real benefits

Credit: Marina Adinolfi
Credit: Marina Adinolfi

Children with imaginary friends are better at learning to communicate than those who do not have one, according to psychologist Dr Evan Kidd at La Trobe University in Melbourne.

In a study of 44 children, Evan and his colleague Anna Roby showed that the 22 children who had imaginary friends were able to get their points across more effectively when talking.

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