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Your Child's Relationship With Technology

Our young children live in a world much influenced by technology. As early year’s teachers we need to help children find a means of using technology in a way that supports their development. There are strong views about the benefits and drawbacks of technology and this week at LEYF we wanted to talk about how we manage children’s relationship with technology.

Like all new inventions, we need to consider how they can help and enrich children’s learning experiences.  During the first three years’ children’s brains are developing at a rapid rate and so we need to nurture the synaptic connections that the brain makes by giving children the best. For example higher order thinking skills essential for future success such as managing emotions, perseverance and concentration, listening to instructions and the whole range of communication are best taught through social play and child and adult interaction.

At LEYF, we introduce children to technology or ICT as we refer to it through first-hand enquiry. It is part of the wider LEYF spiral curriculum and is considered a useful teaching method to support children’s all round development. For example, we use computers, digital cameras, digital microscopes, programmable toys and metal detectors. We use ICT to extend language and literacy, deepen mathematical understanding, encourage problem solving, reasoning and investigation as well as social skills such as sharing, co-operating and working together.

When asked about managing children’s access to technology at home, the best advice from the research is to try and curtail the time children use technology such as iPad. Pay attention to their physical health for example a number of universities have found the swipe motion is affecting children’s fine motor skills (narrow, discrete rotational movement we make in our hands and wrists).  At LEYF we have increased activities using tongs, pincer activities to balance the risk of this.

Create a healthy balance by controlling the amount of usage and model good practice by remembering to put your own phone away!

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