iPads and Kindergarten

The reading for this week was by Matthew Jones, a Kidergarten teacher at Wiley park public School, about using iPads for literacy development in Kindergarten. Key ideas from this paper were:

  • New technologies (e.g. computers, iPads) are now an important part of students’ daily lives and that their interactions with these technologies represents a significant part of their ‘play’ experiences 
  • Child-initiated socio-dramatic play helps to enhance language development and, as such, needs to be incorporated in the Kindergarten classroom – iPads provide an excellent forum for this
  •  It is useful to build upon popular culture (e.g. Playschool) to angage and extend literacy learning  – apps such as the ‘Play School art maker’ help to do this
  • Always at the heart of good literacy lessons is the teacher’s understanding of literacy and langauge development  – interactions and guidance from an experienced teacher is essential
  • Effective classroom reading practice will include the use of: (a) pre-reading activities that help students make prior connections to the ideas and and vocabulary in the text to be read; (b) during-reading activities to help students access the meaning and function of a text; and (c) after-reading experiences that allow students to respond creatively to the text
  • iPads have a significant impact on student engagement, helping them to sustain interest in the task of retelling a story and providing a powerful means for meaning-making. They are also effective devices for tracking and recording student learning for assessment purposes. 

Reference:

Jones, M. (2012). iPads and Kindergarten Students’ Literacy Development. SCAN: The Journal for Educators 31.4 (November2012): 31-38. Print. (www.scan.nsw.edu.au)

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