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Article: ICT in the Early Years

This is a very insightful article, written by a Rachel Ager, who talks about the growing need to actually teach children how to use ICT, rather than assuming because it is all around them now they will learn on their own.

ICT IN THE EARLY YEARS

Rachel discusses the adult’s role and the way they can teach children, while letting them play and discover at the same time, for example using questions such as: ‘what would happen if I pressed this button?’. I feel this is a great way for children to explore ICT and learn how to use it, without feeling they are being forced to learn the skills, or even know they are learning at all.

There is also a Health and Safety section at the end of the article, which discusses some of the issues which may not normally be thought about in a setting, for example not leaving children unattended with rechargeable batteries, or checking all plug sockets are safe.
It also touches upon the rules which could be put into place with ICT resources, e.g. a time limit on each resource to ensure a range is used and all children get to explore, as well as rules to keep the equipment safe, for example using the neck strap when taking pictures with a camera. For me, the time limit on resources for each child is a brilliant idea, due to the fact there is always that child in foundation stage who will run to the computers during free play, and stay on these until called for an activity. It is great that they are using ICT, however they may not know anything about how cameras work, so need to explore a range.

Overall, I found this article very interesting, and I will be using the ideas and information within this in the future when planning ICT sessions / activities as a reference point.