Tech Thoughts with Tiny Tots

Musings with a Manitoba ECE

Bringing it to Work

“Copeful: Get Through Grief Together” by Megan Daley is licensed under CC BY-NC 4.0

Over the past week I have been making informal inquiries at work about our technology policies and how they are formed. My director informed me that we do have a technology policy, but it was related to staff use of tech, rather than how we implement tech use with the children. In a search of our policy manuals available to the parents, I found no mention of it. I suggested that through the resources available to me through the EDCI 567 class, I may soon be in a position to provided advice on appropriate guidelines to inform future policy with regard to technology use with children. My director was supportive, and this feels like it may be a start to my research for this course. However, there is so much to learn, I’m not quite ready to pigeon-hole myself just yet.

Another interesting development that came out of one of those conversations with the management team was that our program coordinator pointed me in the direction of a free webinar at Early Childhood Investigations called What the Research Says About Documentation Systems & Outcome for Families, Teachers & Children, by M.E. Picher, Ph.D.. Since it’s a free webinar, and based on research in Canada, I will check it out. My only hesitation is that it is sponsored by Storypark. I’ll look a little deeper into whether the research was funded by Storypark or whether after its completion they merely funded the production of the webinar. It’ll give me a little more insight into the integrity. I’m a somewhat suspicious person, and I don’t like to take things at face value. I guess that is one of my core media literacy skills.

The webinar isn’t until September 18th, and I’ll likely watch it asynchronously as it falls during work hours, but look for a mini review in the weeks to come.

Beginning Thoughts

Children in the 21st century are avid users of technology – more so than generations past. This rise in use has led to much attention on the consequences of technology use, and how this impacts children’s brains and their socio-emotional, cognitive and physical development.  – Gottschalk, OECD, 2019

As new technologies arrive and make themselves at home in our lives, I am not alone in wondering about the impact they have on children’s development. How should we negotiate a place for these technologies in early childhood, particularly infancy?

I am interested in exploring how digital technologies impact very young children’s development and finding a balance between gaining important digital and media literacy skills and potential negative developmental outcomes. The focus of my inquiry is the age range from birth through two years.

Through the master’s of education program in Early Childhood Education at the University of Victoria, and more specifically through the Interactive and Multimedia Learning Theories course, I expect to begin my journey toward answering some of my questions about young children and technology, and most likely, finding new questions I hadn’t considered.