Reading & Literacy Report Roundup

School Climate

By Sarah D. Sparks — January 22, 1997 1 min read

Children develop the foundation for lifelong reading skills in early elementary school, and a new study in the Journal of Neuroscience finds they may be hampered more by additional noise in the classroom than adults.

Researchers monitored the brains of adults and children ages 6 to 9 as they listened to four recorded stories, each with different background noise. Both children and adults showed brain activity associated with processing sounds as they tracked the speech of the storytellers. However, children were significantly worse at distinguishing syllables generally, and they struggled much more than adults to follow the speaker as noise increased from other voices in the background.

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A version of this article appeared in the February 27, 2019 edition of Education Week as School Climate

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