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Photo: Sebastian Kahnert/picture alliance via Getty Images

Interactive learning apps prove helpful for early academic skills in developing children, particularly in early mathematics, but not without some limitations, researchers found.

Why it matters: Touch screens are ubiquitous among young children due in part to the rising popularity of educational apps that teach classroom instruction and memory. Under pressure to prepare them for school, parents give children the technology for later academic, behavioral, and emotional functioning.

Yes, but: There is no evidence of the effectiveness of apps trying to improve social communication skills in children with autism spectrum disorder, according to a study of more than 4,000 participants published Monday in the American Academy of Pediatrics.

  • More research is needed to evaluate both the potential and the limitations of educational apps to support early learning.

Several past studies have tried to measure children's increasing exposure to screen time, but never on the effect of interactive content on the education of children.

Go deeper: "60 Minutes" talked to scientists studying the effects of screen time on different age groups of children.

Go deeper

Biden confronts mounting humanitarian crisis at the border

Illustration: Eniola Odetunde/Axios. Photo: Pool/Getty Images     

Just over a month into his presidency, President Biden is staring down a mounting crisis at the border that could be just as bad as the ones faced by Barack Obama and Donald Trump, if not worse.

Why it matters: Immigration is an issue that can consume a presidency. It's intensely and poisonously partisan. It's complicated. And the lives and welfare of vulnerable children hang in the balance.

Erica Pandey, author of @Work
2 hours ago - Economy & Business

The rise of vaccine passports

Illustration: Annelise Capossela/Axios

Vaccine passports were touted early in the pandemic as an important piece of the plan to get people back to normal life. Now they’re becoming a reality.

Driving the news: CLEAR, the secure digital identity app that you see in airports around the world, and CommonPass, a health app that lets users securely access vaccination records and COVID test results, have joined forces.

"Vaccine tourism" stretches states' supplies

Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

Americans who are highly motivated to get vaccinated are traveling across state lines after hearing about larger vaccine supplies or loopholes in sign-up systems.

Why it matters: "Vaccine tourism" raises ethical and legal questions, and could worsen the racial socioeconomic and racial inequalities of the pandemic.