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Building computer supported collaborative learning environments in early childhood classrooms


A Multi-touch table functions as a tablet, but allows multiple children to move around and manipulate the screen simultaneously. Using social cognitive theory (Bandura 1997) to analyze group dynamics, this study examined computer-supported collaborative learning. Children were observed and recorded for 20 min, three times a week for 5 weeks as they manipulated apps developed by Kaplan Early Learning Company for the multi-touch table Engage-2. Results indicate that the ability of multiple children to manipulate an app simultaneously encouraged collaboration while issues of personal space were rarely present. Multiple problem-solving strategies were in evidence as the children manipulated the apps. Results suggests that individual agency turned into collective agency during the app play.

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Correspondence to Donna Karno.

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Dr. Donna Karno and Dr. Beth Hatcher declares that they have no conflict of interest. Kaplan Early Learning Company provided the multi-touch table for the research, but did not become involved beyond furnishing the table.

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Karno, D., Hatcher, B. Building computer supported collaborative learning environments in early childhood classrooms. Education Tech Research Dev 68, 249–267 (2020). https://doi.org/10.1007/s11423-019-09686-z

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  • Technology
  • Early childhood
  • Computer supported learning environments