A big concern for American parents is whether wearing masks will hinder children’s language development. According to Samantha mitzburn, a doctoral student in psychology at the University of Miami, researchers including her worry that children may not be able to understand and learn new words because they cannot see the speaker’s mouth movements and their voice is blocked.
Relevant studies have confirmed that masks can blur the voice of speech, but the degree varies according to the type of mask. A study published in the journal developmental science on May 3, 2021, found that children wearing transparent masks learned new words faster than children wearing ordinary masks.
A study published in the Journal of the acoustic society of America on October 27, 2020, also shows that the acoustic performance of general surgical masks is the best, followed by kn95 masks, N95 masks, and some cloth masks, among which transparent masks are the worst.
However, according to experts, there is no clear evidence that the blurring caused by wearing masks can greatly reduce children’s communication ability. This may be because people wearing masks try to make up for their inability to be heard by speaking slower and louder than usual and using gestures.
In a recent study, audio recordings in a preschool classroom were analyzed. This record compares the recordings in the classroom before the epidemic with those during the period when children and teachers were forced to wear masks. The results showed that there was no difference in the language spoken by children, especially in every class.
What they say is no different from that of children of the same age