The integration of technology in any classroom today is about the teacher imagining the potential for learning with the available technology – the here and now of the technology in the classroom.
When it comes to integrating technology in the preschool classroom, it is no different.
True technology integration the preschool learning environment is planning to ensure that technology or Information and Communication Technology is viewed as a tool to support and enhance teaching and learning and not simply as a skill to be learned.
Here are some tips on integrating technology in the preschool classroom:
You can support children in developing their own use of a digital camera along with encouraging them to reflect on the photographs they have taken. They can the digital camera to look closely at natural objects and use digital photos as a stimulus for art and creative work.
Begin by modelling the use of the software yourself. Examples of this include MS Paint or other drawing and painting programs. If you are short of ideas, you can take a photo with a digital camera and then open it in a paint program. Follow on from this by painting over the top of it.
What about clown faces? Find a photo on Google and then paint over the top of this.
Have you thought about taping chalk to the back of a bee bot and programming it to draw on large sheets of black paper. You can also use bee bots to spell out words or count numbers on a path. Children can use it to play out stories they have heard or read themselves.
The availability of this digital technology in early childhood education makes it a good option for children to record the process of an activity as they progress through it, documenting their own learning.
What kind of reaction do you think you will get from the children when they see themselves on camera as a result of leaving the webcam on during the day. This could lead to sharing a story, singing, and seeing themselves reading a story.
Make the most of the available technology in the preschool classroom as the opportunities are endless. If you can’t afford new ones, don’t be afraid to ask for donations from the community. You may be surprised how much unused technology is out there. Remember, if a young child knows how to use real technology, don’t encourage use of toy technology.