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Technology should not replace hands-on learning experience



Published: Fri, November 1, 2013 @ 12:00 a.m.

Technology should not replace hands-on learning experience

Technology is at an all-time high in our society today and the most popular users consist of young children. Providing technology in the classroom is one thing, but when there are children from birth to age eight involved, we need to think about how technology can affect their development and growth.

When teachers provide younger children with the newest technology, it takes the place of the hands-on learning experiences that are essential for their development and success. Children need to be able to use their senses for the things in front of them so that way they can really understand what they are learning about instead of staring at a screen all day.

I am a prospective early childhood educator who believes that handing a child an iPad to play with for most of the time that they spend in the classroom is the wrong answer. Children can’t touch, feel, or taste the images on the screen in front of them to learn more about the subjects.

By limiting the amount of time young children can spend playing with technology in the early childhood classrooms, children, teachers, and parents will benefit greatly. Interactions among peers is very important, especially for younger children, because children need to be able to talk to one another to learn how to share, understand the things around them, and most of all learn from each other. The American Academy of Pediatrics recommends no more than one to two hours of total screen time per day for children older than two.

I feel that there should be a limit on the amount of technology that is exposed to children from birth to age eight in early childhood classrooms in order to provide children with the unforgettable learning experiences that can occur when children are that young. If we make sure that there are centers and workshops in the early childhood classrooms that can provide children with hands-on materials, the assurance for positive educational experiences shall be fulfilled, and children will have balanced activities between hands-on experiences and technology.

Riley Blockinger, Berlin Center


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