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Digital Technologies in the Literate Lives of Young Children

  • Brian FinchEmail author
  • Alison W. Arrow
Chapter
Part of the International Perspectives on Early Childhood Education and Development book series (CHILD, volume 17)

Abstract

New domestic digital technologies (smartphones, iPads, tablet computers, laptops) have altered children’s access to narratives and information. Limited teacher knowledge of students’ experiences of digital technologies, and of the technologies themselves limits their effective use in primary classrooms. In early childhood education settings, when the technology is available, there is a tension between providing planned scaffolding with digital technologies and the philosophies of child-centred, play-based learning. Across a number of studies we have used survey, interviews, diaries and video to examine children’s use of technologies and their use in literacy learning. The findings suggest that children use a variety of technologies, often based around specific narratives. Children interact with the technologies and often illustrate literacy learning that their parents are unaware of. In contrast, teachers of primary school children do not trust that parents are providing suitable experiences and early childhood teachers recognise the value of the technology for their own planning and home-school connection purposes but are unsure of how to integrate it into teaching and learning with children accessing the tools themselves. Implications for practice include greater awareness of the role of popular culture in the drawing together of multiple literacy forms as well as a combination of teacher and child-directed practices in the early childhood education setting.

Keywords

Early Childhood Education Digital Technology Popular Culture Kindergarten Teacher Emergent Literacy 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.

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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media Singapore 2017

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Institute of EducationMassey UniversityPalmerston NorthNew Zealand

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