3. Color perception in infants and young children

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From early childhood on, color is an important aspect of our visual experience. Already one month old infants spontaneously prefer coloured pictures over gray stimuli (Adams, 1987). Not surprisingly, therefore, colour plays an important role in picturebooks. However, when born, an infant’s visual system is still immature and needs to develop. In this chapter I will consider the significance of color in picturebooks, and how colored pictures may be perceived by infants and young children up to three years of age, given the development of color vision in this age group. Possible consequences for the choice of colors in picturebooks are discussed.


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