As we all know, it’s often difficult to comb through the myriad of blogs, webpages, review sites, and research reports that reflect the current findings and trends in children’s media. PlayScience is a company that specializes in collecting field data as well as writing blogs about childhood technology, media, and play. However, my favorite offering from PlayScience is the Lab Notes; a weekly e-newsletter. Every week, the LabNotes bring together that week’s biggest articles, videos, and posts about anything dealing with childhood, technology, and media. Some of the topics from recent Lab Notes newsletters include:
- Sesame Workshop’s Best Practices for Preschool App Development
- The ways in which roughhousing and fantasy play promote development
- Preschool Kids are Taking to iPads with Ease
PlayScience is a fantastic way to stay updated on recent findings in childhood play and education without having to spend a lot of time investigating.
This week the team took our stack of iPad 2s out into the preschool world, and introduced the tablets to a lively group of children in Worcester, MA. We knew that the children would enjoy interacting with the tablets, but we did not expect them to adapt to the touch interface with such gusto. The multi-sensory experiences afforded by the tablets seemed to be right up their alley!
The NGPM team is still in the process of exploring how the interactive media experience will fit into the overall classroom experience, but one thing is clear, the power of the touch interface is that children can be the captains of their learning experience with little to no training. Can you imagine that feeling of dashing off onto the high seas, spurred only by your curiosity and a fearless spirit of adventure? Sure, it’s quite a risky maneuver, but imagine the payoff when you finally realize for yourself where it is you’re going!
Though it’s not recommended for daily use, here are some ways you can experience the iPad like a preschooler:
1) First things first, never worry about rules or instructions. If you don’t know what to do, try to figure it out. That’s the fun part!
2) Tap anything that catches your fancy.
3) If something cool happens, show your friends.
4) If nothing happens, just move on and find something else that catches your fancy.
5). Tap, swipe, or drag without fear of consequences. The worst that can happen is that you have to restart.
6) Still can’t figure out how to play a game? No problem. Make your own rules.
7) Clean hands are optional.
8) Last, but not least, take the time to marvel at all the exciting little things you’ve seen, learned, and done.
– Anna the NGPM Intern