the early years, birth to age 8, children grow and learn rapidly.
Each experience with
the environment offers opportunities to increase a child's understanding
of the world. The important aspect of learning is how the experience
fits into the child's life, how it connects.
This is true with
technology also. The computer does not cause the learning. The
connection the child has with adults and other children, and
the connection of the technology to the curriculum, together
provide a basis for learning.
and Child Development
Children have important
tasks to accomplish during their early years to build a solid
base for future learning. Used appropriately, technology can be
a positive factor in a child's learning process. But the use of
computers and other technology must be thoughtfully planned to
provide for their learning needs. Two important questions need
to be considered when introducing young children to anything new,
- Is it developmentally
appropriateis it consistent with how a child develops
and learns, and with the child's current developmental stage?
- Will the activity
benefit the child, or will it replace some other, more meaningful
The answers to these
two questions will help guide the use of technology in a child's
Areas of Children's Development
The National Education
Goals Panel identified five essential dimensions (developmental
domains) of early development and learning: physical well-being
and motor development; social and emotional development; approaches
toward learning; language development; and cognition and general
More information on the five areas