Document Type

Article

Publication Date

January 2008

Abstract

The purpose of this review of research is to describe the integration of technology in the early childhood curriculum. The review presents issues surrounding the use of technology in early childhood education; synthesizes research findings on the impact of technology use on young children’s educational achievement; provides professionals in the field with instructional strategies for integrating technology in a variety of content areas within the early childhood curriculum; and shares recommendations for the developmentally appropriate and effective use of technology for young children. This review supports the professional growth of early childhood professionals by facilitating their understanding of research-based practices that utilize technology. This research-oriented knowledge base is essential as early childhood educators consider their perceptions and beliefs about the use of technology with young children and confront any biases that may exist. The research findings may be used as a yardstick by which educators measure their current level of expertise, self-assess their learning needs, and take steps to implement technology as a tool for promoting the educational growth of each of their young learners. This aspect of technology integration is crucial, given that the types of background experiences and range of exposure to technology that young children bring to the learning situation can be vast. Additionally, this research review may be used to guide administrators in providing teachers of young children with the tools they need to promote best practices in technology integration. Lastly, the synthesis of research informs teacher educators as they prepare their preservice teachers to enter the field of early childhood education ready to meet the unique needs of young children. Steps must be taken to ensure that technology is available for young children and that its use is both developmentally appropriate and effective. Further, professional development should involve a long-term commitment to provide on-going support based upon individual teachers’ needs.

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