What are the benefits of ICT in Early Childhood Education?
The following 10 reasons will highlight the advantages of ICT in early childhood education:
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Firstly, young children are already being exposed to ICT tools and as such it already has an effect on them and on the environment and people that surround them.
ICT tools are becoming a ubiquitous component of the physical and social world. It is an important part of the private and work-life of most people, including young children.
This relates to the many opportunities and potential ICT delivers to the teaching and learning of the curriculum.
In early childhood, it can:
- Support and enhance learning and play experiences.
- Support and strengthen your professional learning as an early childhood teacher.
- Support and strengthen your relationships with parents and other people connected to your early childhood education centre.
Many curriculums are now supporting the integration of ICT across the education sector from early childhood to tertiary.
Research shows that the delayed attention to ICT in early childhood has given the sector an advantage that while in the past attention has been given towards getting ICT infrastructure into schools without pedagogical support, the reverse is now occurring.
ICT supports metacognition or ‘learning to learn’. It means knowing that you know and it provides the foundation to what an ICT capable child is.
The use of ICT in early childhood education supports many opportunities for creative development with young children. Through the use of ICT in role plays, they will employ imaginative thinking.
Language development is greatly enhanced when ICT is employed in learning environments. ICT tools and resources such as word processors may appear to be very basic, but remember the power of word processing is in the ease in which children can easily edit and change their writing whilst developing their language and literacy skills.
Children can increase their world knowledge through the use of modern technology such as the Internet.
The many features that ICT brings with it in the learning environment will in the end improve the fine and motor gross skills of children.
Mathematical development is also enhanced as a result of the visual images which computers can provide.
One of the many benefits that will come with the use of ICT in early childhood education is that of collaboration. This alone helps to build language with children in addition to developing their social skills.