A former speech therapy lecturer defends In the Night Garden from accusations that the children’s TV programme encourages egocentric language learning

As a former lecturer in speech and language therapy who once set students the task of researching the appeal of Teletubbies and drawing inferences for their practice with disabled children, may I mount a defence of In the Night Garden in the face of Catherine Shoard’s onslaught (Is children’s TV raising a crop of raving narcissists?, 7 May).

As it happens, I watched it regularly last week with my 13-month-old granddaughter, and was struck again by how brilliantly the programme is designed. The sound-making and onomatopoeia that Shoard so dislikes reflect the very early emergence of words from babble and draw attention to what happens on screen; the way Igglepiggle and the other characters use their own names serves as identification.

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