Tuesday, 15 January 2013

I pad - Good or Bad?

                        The latest learning tool being used in settings is the I Pad

Technology is a big part of the world today, and naturally children are becoming more and more aware of the gadgets we have around our homes. Even yesterday I caught my little one pretending to use her mobile by swiping her finger across the screen to "show you my picture, Mummy!" It seems only natural, then that such items are making their way into childcare settings.

Many settings are now beginning to add I pads to their equipment. They are seen to be just right for children's hands and with the wide range of Apps available, seem to be a great learning tool. Some places have interactive whiteboards, so surely this is just a smaller and a table - fitting alternative?

A newspaper report in 2011, underlined the fact that some nurseries were shying away from the use of new technology in their settings as many staff as well as parents, were worried that spending time in front of computer screens would lead to obesity and unsociable attitudes in the children. However, there is the view now that with technology being so profound in our lives, childcare settings are actually being negligent for not considering their use.

For those children who cannot access I Pads etc in their home lives, having them in their childcare setting could help them to embrace the technological world earlier. With so many jobs using computers in everyday life, children today will surely need these skills in the future. So, what are the Pros and cons?

Cons :

1. They are expensive - not cheap to replace if they get damaged.

2. They could cause conflict if there are not enough to go around.

3. Some parents may not agree to them being used.

4. They may prevent children for using traditional writing tools and equipment

Pros :

1. They are a great learning tool for learning to write, shapes and colours

2. They are often seen in the home and are a good tool for those who don't have a access to one.

3. They can be protected by a special case, to prevent damage

4. They can encourage turn taking and sharing

I feel, as with so many items of learning equipment today, if they are used alongside the "traditional" toys and equipment, IPads can be extremely useful in childcare settings. If a setting can afford to have one in their possession, it seems as though it would be a great learning tool for children, and a reflection on their home lives too. As I have said about so many issues on here.....everything in moderation!! I am even considering perhaps getting one for our daughter to use after researching this!!

learn more about the use of Ipads with children using these links (the last video is very interesting!!)






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