ArticlePDF Available


Research on the use of computers and other educational technology with young children has become increasingly sophisticated as their use has increased in early childhood educational settings. This paper reviews the research on computers and social interaction, teaching with computers, and curriculum and computers. The review finds that computers serve as catalysts for social interaction, with children spending nine times as much time talking with peers while working at computers than while doing puzzles. Social interactions are influenced by the type of software used and the physical environment surrounding the computer. Computers and other technology offer opportunities to aid learning through making more visible individual and gender differences in approaches to learning. Effectively integrating technology into the early childhood curriculum entails several issues, including matching the type of computer software used with the skills desired and coupling computer and off-computer activities for maximum learning. The paper then describes The Building Blocks curriculum for pre-kindergarten through grade 2; this technology-based curriculum is designed to enable young children to build mathematics knowledge and develop higher-order thinking skills. The curriculum integrates computers, manipulatives, and print materials. (Contains 36 references.) (KB)
Michael S. Horn: COMP 194-RJ, Directed Study March 1, 2004
Literature Review: Douglas Clements, 1999
Title: Young Children and Technology
Author: Douglas Clements
Year: 1999
Collection: Dialogue on Early Childhood Science, Math, and Technology Education
Publisher: American Assoc. for the Advancement of Science
By the end of the 1980s, one fourth of licensed preschools had computers. Today almost every preschool has
a computer.
Computer-Student Ratio
1:125 in 1984
1:22 in 1990
1:10 in 1997
We no longer need to ask whether the use of technology is “developmentally appropriate”. It is.
Very young children have shown comfort and confidence in using software.
They can follow pictorial directions and use situational and visual cues to understand and think about
their activities [3].
Typing on a keyboard is a source of pride not trouble.
Children with physical and emotional disabilities can also use computers and it may help improve their
Children attending low-income and high-minority schools have less access to technology [5].
Also, we no longer need to ask whether computers can help children learn. They can.
What we need to understand is:
How to best aid learning
What types of learning to facilitate
How to serve the needs of diverse populations
Important to realize that not every use of technology is appropriate or beneficial. Design of curriculum and
social settings are critical.
Social Interaction
Early concerns that computers would isolate children was alleviated by research. In contrast, computers serve
as a catalyst for social interaction.
95% of children’s talk using Logo is work related
Children spend 9 times as much time talking to peers while working with computers as they do working
on puzzles. [10]
Children prefer to work with a friend rather than alone.
They foster new friendships in presence of computers.
There is greater spontaneous peer teaching and helping when children are using computers [1].
Open-ended programs tend to foster collaboration.
Drill-and-practice can encourage turn-taking but also competition.
Video games with aggressive content can engender competitiveness and aggression.
Used differently, computers can have the opposite effect [1] [7].
Physical environments also affect children’s interaction [6]. Two seats can encourage positive social interaction.
Placing computers close to each other can facilitate idea sharing. Central location of computers encourages
participation in computer activities as well as optimal teacher involvement [2].
Teaching with Computers
Observing the child at the computer provides a “window” into their thinking process [11].
Sometimes beneficial effects only appear after a year.
Ongoing observations help us chart children’s learning process [4].
Differences in learning styles more obvious at a computer [12].
Gender/cultural differences emerge in student programming styles [13].
Teachers must have in-depth training with technology for it to be successful.
Curriculum and Computers
Computers also offer unique opportunities for learning through exploration, creative problem solving, and
self-guided instruction.
Must focus simultaneously on curriculum and technology [8].
Effectively integrating technology into curriculum demands effort, time, commitment, and, sometimes, even a
change in one’s beliefs.
Rote drill-and-practice software is not as effective in improving conceptual skills of children as discovery-based
software [3]. However, this is best in open-ended projects rather than free exploration [9].
Computer activities yield best results when coupled with suitable off-computer activities:
According to Haugland’92 when children use developmental software alone, they gain in intelligence, non-
verbal skill, long-term memory, and manual dexterity. When coupled with supplemental activities, children
also gain in verbal skills, problem solving, and conceptual skills. With drill-and-practice software, children
spent three times as long on the computer, but demonstrated less than half the gain as developmental with
In mathematics, specifically, drill-and-practice can help students develop competence counting and sorting [3].
However, the it is questionable whether the exclusive use of such software would meet NCTM’s standard of
“mathematically literate” children.
Software that emphasizes discussing and problem solving in geometry, number sense, and patterns with the
help of manipulatives and the computer may be more in-line with NCTM standards.
For example: geometric drawing programs, logo, etc.
[1] D.H. Clements and M.T. Battista. The development of a logo-based elementary school geometry curriculum (final
report). NSF Grant No.: MDR–8651668, 1992. State University of New York at Buffalo/Kent State University.
[2] Douglas Clements. Current technology and the early childhood curriculum. In B. Spodek and O.N. Saracho,
editors, Yearbook in early childhood education, volume 2, pages 106–131. Teachers College Press, New York, 1991.
[3] Douglas Clements and B. Nastasi. Electronic media and early childhood education. In B. Spodek, editor, Handbook
of research on the education of young children, pages 251–275. Macmillan, New York, 1993.
[4] M. Cochran-Smith, J. Kahn, and C.L. Paris. When word processors come into the classroom. In J.L hoot and
S.B. Silvern, editors, Writing with computers in the early grades, pages 43–74. New York: Teachers College Press,
[5] R.J. Coley, J. Cradler, and P.K. Engel. Computers and classrooms: The status of technology in U.S. schools.
Educational Testing Service, Princeton, NJ, 1997.
[6] J. Davidson and J.L. Wright. The potential of the microcomputer in the early childhood classroom. In J.L. Wright
and D.D. Shade, editors, Young children: Active learners in a technological age, pages 77–91. National Association
for the Education of Young Children., Washington, DC, 1994.
[7] G. Forman. Computer graphics as a medium for enhancing reflective thinking in young children. In J. Bishop,
J. Lochhead, and D.N. Perkins, editors, Thinking, pages 131–137. Lawrence Erlbaum Associates, Hillsdale, NJ,
[8] C. Hohmann. Staff development practices for integrating technology in early childhood education programs. In
J.L. Wright and D.D. Shade, editors, Young children: Active learners in a technological age, page 104. National
Association for the Education of Young Children., Washington, DC, 1994.
[9] T. Lemerise. Piaget, vygotsky, and logo. The Computing Teacher, pages 24–28, 1993.
[10] A.A. Muller and M. Perlmutter. Preschool children’s problem-solving interactions at computers and jigsaw puzzles.
Journal of Applied Developmental Psychology, 6:173–186, 1985.
[11] S. Weir, S.J. Russell, and J.A. Valente. Logo: An approach to educating disabled children. BYTE, 7:342–360,
[12] J.L. Wright. Listen to the children: Observing young children’s discoveries with the microcomputer. In J.L. Wright
and D.D. Shade, editors, Young children: Active learners in a technological age, pages 3–17. National Association
for the Education of Young Children, Washington, DC, 1994.
[13] N. Yelland. The strategies and interactions of young children in logo tasks. Journal of Computer Assisted Learning,
10:33–49, 1994.
... Computer-assisted learning environments encourage creativity and critical thinking . Research in the last decade of the 20th century shows the useful contribution of computer technology in the early childhood education setting in all curricular areas and also its impact on the development of the child and her abilities of creative and critical thinking, on the social development and learning to learn (Clements, Nastasi and Swaminathan, 1993;Clements, 1999;Yelland, 2005). ...
... The treatment of technology integration in early learning has been polarized (Bowman, 1999). Proponents of early science and mathematics introduced educational technology based on the constructivism theories prevalent in the 1990s (Bowman, 1999;Clements, 1999). The principles of implementation emphasized the role of the teacher in choosing the appropriate software, mutual promotion of cognitive and social skills of the child, inclusion of computers in conjunction with traditional early learning materials, inclusion by providing equal opportunities for children, use by overcoming stereotyping of individuals and groups. ...
... In introducing activities supported by digital technology, these authors point to the need to focus on activities to develop thinking, problem solving, and learning to learn, rather than training. As early as the late 1990s, meaningful learning was introduced in the United States to replace basic skills training without understanding concepts (Bowman, 1999), uthe use of computers to develop learning and metacognitive skills (Papert, 1980;1980a), and computer-assisted collaborative learning and training in conjunction with collaborative and competitive tasks, computer visualization, and virtual representations for learning concepts (Clements, 1999). ...
Full-text available
The main goal of the present scientific monograph is the importance and role of educational technology in the function of the educational process, while researching the trends and influences of parents in the child's personal development during the educational process. In doing so, he researches and highlights didactic-methodological principles in the use of educational technologies and, at the implementation level, highlights the method of digital storytelling with the help of educational technologies.
... Iz raziskav v zadnjem desetletju 20. stoletja je razviden koristen prispevek izobraževalne tehnologije na vseh kurikularnih področjih in tudi njen vpliv na razvoj otroka in njegovih sposobnosti ustvarjalnega in kritičnega mišljenja ter na socialni razvoj in učenje učenja (Clements, Nastasi in Swaminathan, 1993;Clements, 1999;Yelland, 2005). ...
... Zagovorniki na področju zgodnjega učenja naravoslovja in matematike so vpeljevali izobraževalno tehnologijo na osnovi konstruktivizma, razširjenega v devetdesetih letih 20. stoletja (Bowman, 1999;Clements, 1999). Načela vpeljave vključujejo poudarjeno vlogo vzgojitelja pri izbiri ustrezne programske opreme, vzajemno spodbujanje kognitivnih in socialnih spretnosti otroka, vključevanje računalnikov v povezavi s tradicionalnimi materiali zgodnjega učenja, vključevanje z zagotavljanjem enakih možnosti otrok, uporabo s preseganjem stereotipiziranja posameznikov in skupin, zagotavljanje podpore za usposabljanje in izobraževanje pedagoškega osebja (Yelland, 2005). ...
... Pri vpeljavi dejavnosti, podprtih z digitalno tehnologijo, avtorji opozarjajo na potrebe po osredotočenosti na aktivnosti za razvoj mišljenja, reševanja problemov, učenja učenja, in ne urjenja. V ZDA so že konec devetdesetih let vpeljevali smiselno učenje za nadomeščanje urjenja temeljnih spretnosti brez razumevanja pojmov (Bowman, 1999), uporabo računalnika za razvoj učenja učenja in metakognitivnih spretnosti (Papert, 1980;1980a), vpeljevali so sodelovalno učenje ob podpori računalnika in urjenje v povezavi s sodelovalnimi in tekmovalnimi nalogami, računalniško vizualizacijo in virtualne reprezentacije za učenje pojmov (Clements, 1999). ...
Full-text available
URL: httpsa//repozitorij1uni-lj1si/IzpisGradiva1php?id= 6682 ::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::: KNJIGA Izobraževalna tehnologija in izgradnja avtentičnega učnega okolja v jedro izobraževalne tehnologije postavlja izboljšanje uspešnosti vzgojno-izobraževalnega procesa. Izobraževalna tehnologija je obravnavana v globalnem sistemu dejavnikov vzgojno-izobraževalnega procesa, saj ima pomembno vlogo pri povezovanju poučevanja v vzgojno-izobraževalnih zavodih in učenja v naravnih okoljih. Izobraževalna tehnologija omogoča vzpostavljanje avtentičnega učnega okolja na tri pomembne načinea (1). uporaba digitalnih medijev je za današnje generacije avtentična aktivnost, avtentično okolje socialnega življenja, (2). zaradi zmožnosti sodobne tehnologije se lahko avtentična učna okolja vzpostavljajo s povezovanjem »učilnice« in različnih izvirnih okolij (naravnih in drugih). in (3). »učilnica« z vsemi funkcijami se lahko vzpostavi v različnih izvirnih okoljih. ::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::ENGLISH ABSTRACT::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::: THE BOOK EDUCATIONAL TECHNOLOGY AND THE CONSTRUCTION OF AN AUTHENTIC LEARNING ENVIRONMENT at the core of educational technology sets out to improve the performance of the educational process. Educational technology is addressed in the global system of factors of the educational process, as it plays an important role in linking teaching in educational institutions and learning in natural environments. Educational technology enables the establishment of an authentic learning environment in three important waysa (1). the use of digital media is an authentic activity for today's generations, an authentic environment of social life, (2). due to the capabilities of modern technology, authentic learning environments can be established by connecting "classroom" and various original environments (natural and other), and (3). a “classroom” with all functions can be established in a variety of original environments.
... Recent research has revealed that robotics has a great potential in upgrading ECE since it can help with children's cognitive, physical, and social development (Salas-Pilco, 2020). Early research with the programmable robot called Logo, for example, has demonstrated that robotics can assist young children in developing a variety of cognitive skills, such as numeracy and visual memory (Clements, 1999). Researchers also paid much attention to robotic kits that help children gain a greater knowledge of mathematical concepts such as number, size, and shape (Brosterman, 1997). ...
Research Findings: This review focuses on the use of robotics in early childhood education (ECE), addressing gender and socioeconomic status (SES) differences in young children’s robotics learning. This review systematically evaluates, synthesizes, and displays the research designs, robotic toys, data collection instruments, research methods, and research findings of 15 studies related to this critical issue published from 1984 to 2021. The findings of the review indicate that children’s robotics-based learning is impacted by gender and their socioeconomic and cultural backgrounds. Boys had a considerably higher level of enjoyment in interacting with robotics than girls. Furthermore, low-income families and low parental education resulted in poor robotics-based learning experiences and outcomes for children. Practice or Policy: It is significant to devote attention to developing effective and inclusive robotics education programs for girls and children from less advantaged backgrounds. More robotics education interventions should be conducted in broader contexts to benefit a wider range of children, especially those from a lower-SES background.
... Çocuklar bilgisayarlarla çalışırken, bulmaca çözmelerine kıyasla akranlarıyla dokuz kat daha fazla iletişime geçmektedir. Teknolojiyi eğitim ile entegre etmenin sonucunda çocukların arzulanan becerilerinin geliştiği ve maksimum öğrenme düzeyine ulaşıldığı görülmüştür (Clements, 1998 (Higgins, 1987;King, 1997 (Yee, 2006b). ...
Full-text available
Online role-playing games are preferred by players for the purpose of socializing and acquiring new identities. In this sense, in the recent years, it has been focused on how adolescents' usage of internet and their usage levels affect their cognitive, emotional and social development in their daily lives, especially communication through online games interactions, identity development and internet addiction. Although the studies conducted in this field are mostly focused on the negative aspects of video games in terms of video game addiction, on the other hand, there are also studies focusing on social competence and acquiring new identities. In this respect, in this study, both the positive and negative aspects of playing video games are handled together and a more comprehensive perspective is tried to be obtained. Thus, the aim of this study is to investigate the relationship between excessive online game usage and related levels of online identity exploration, online self, loneliness, social competence and self-concept clarity levels of adolescents playing video games. In addition, adaptation studies of measurement tools that have not been adapted in our country previously constitute a secondary aim of this study.The sample of the study consists of 258 male participants aged between 15-25 years. The scales of Self Concept Clarity, Online Identity Expression / Exploration, Online Identity (Online Self), Excessive Online Game Use, UCLA Loneliness, Escape from Loneliness and Social Competence and Demographic information form was applied to the participants. Firstly, exploratory and confirmatory factor analyzes were performed for the adaptation of the scales and reliability coefficients were calculated and all the measurements were found to be valid and reliable. When age-related differences are considered, while 15-18 years old (n = 135) have high level of online identity explorations during playing game, 19-25 years old (n = 123) have higher score on online identity / online independence (playing without being dependent on other players), social self-disclosure and self-concept clarities. In terms of duration of daily game usage, it was found that those who play extreme games (4-5 hours or higher in a day) have higher levels of escape from loneliness and lower online identity / online independence levels than those who play less. In addition, results revealed that escape from loneliness and online identity / online independence levels predict excessive online game usage. All findings were evaluated and discussed within the framework of adolescence and identity formation.
... Today children are exposed to more technology than at any other point of history [19]. This applies to the use of technology for both entertainment and education. ...
Artificial intelligence (AI) algorithms have emerged in the educational domain as a tool to make learning more efficient. Different applications for mastering particular skills, learning new languages, and tracking their progress are used by children. What is the impact on children from using this smart technology? We conducted a systematic review to understand the state of the art. We explored the literature in several sub-disciplines: wearables, child psychology, AI and education, school surveillance, and accountability. Our review identified the need for more research for each established topic. We managed to find both positive and negative effects of using wearables, but cannot conclude if smart technology use leads to lowering the young children's performance. Based on our insights we propose a framework to effectively identify accountability for smart technology in education.
... It is essential to a broad range of planning, critical thinking, and problem-solving situations and has broad implications for other discipline, such as reading, writing, and arithmetic (Wing, 2006(Wing, , 2011. For example, computer programming was found to help young children develop language skills and visual memory (Clements, 1999). Educational robotics kits were found to help children develop a strong understanding of mathematical concepts, including number, size, and shape (Brosterman, 1997;Resnick et al., 1998) as well as representation, spatial concepts, and measurement (Highfield, 2000). ...
Full-text available
Research Findings: Computational thinking (CT), which is defined as the systematic analysis, exploration, and testing of solutions to open-ended and often complex problems, is an important skill to foster in early childhood. However, little is known about teachers’ role in fostering CT in early childhood classrooms. To address this gap, we conducted an exploratory case study to investigate how an exemplary teacher supported preschoolers’ CT learning in developmentally appropriate ways using an interactive programmable toy. We video recorded 12 weekly sessions of a small group of children and employed a hybrid approach—combining open coding and a priori coding based on standard definitions of CT—to analyze the data. Using one “telling” session to illustrate the findings, we discuss how the teacher employed a range of scaffolding strategies to support CT practices (e.g., problem reformation/decomposition, systematic testing, and debugging) and CT perspectives including communication, collaboration, and perseverance. Practice or Policy: Findings underscore the importance of providing professional support for teachers to engage preschoolers in CT learning.
Over the past few years, new approaches to introducing young children to computational thinking have grown in popularity. This chapter examines the role that user interfaces have on children's mastery of computational thinking concepts, programming ability, and positive interpersonal behaviors. It presents two technologies designed specifically for young children: the KIBO robotics kit and the ScratchJr programming application, both of which focus on teaching young children introductory computational thinking skills in a cognitively and socio-emotionally developmentally appropriate way. The KIBO robotics kit engages children in learning programming by using tangible wooden blocks (no screens or keyboards required). ScratchJr also teaches foundational programming, but using a graphical language on a tablet device. This chapter presents examples of how each tool can be used in classroom settings and the potential benefits and drawbacks of each interface style. Suggestions for implementing each technology in a developmentally appropriate way are presented.
Gelişim açısından yaşamın ilk yıllarını oluşturan bebeklik dönemi birey için önemli bir süreçtir. Bu süreçte çevresel faktörlerin gelişim üzerinde etkili olduğu bilinmektedir. Günümüzde, artık yaşamın bir parçası hâline gelen akıllı telefon, tablet bilgisayar ve internet gibi bilgi ve iletişim teknolojileri de çevresel faktörler arasında yerini almış durumdadır. Bu nedenle, keşif aşamasındaki 18-24 aylık bebeğin dikkatini çekebilecek pek çok özelliğe sahip teknolojinin bebeklere yansıması merak konusudur. Bu bağlamda araştırmanın amacını; "ebe-veynlerin kendisi ya da bebeği için teknolojiyi kullanırken ya da bebeğine kullandırırken teknolojinin bebeğe etkilerinin incelenmesi" oluşturmaktadır. Araştırmaya ilişkin veriler nitel araştırma yöntemiyle toplanmıştır. Çalışma grubunu, 2017 yılında Van ilinde 18-24 ay aralığında bebekleri olan 35 anne ve 17 baba olmak üze-re toplam 52 ebeveyn oluşturmuştur. Veri toplama aracı olarak tek bir sorudan oluşan yarı-yapılandırılmış görüşme formu hazırlanmış, ebeveynlerden detaylı bilgi almak ve görüşmeyi yönlendirmek için de sondalar sorulmuştur. Nitel verilerin analiz edilmesinde içerik analizi yapılmıştır. Çalışma, teknolojinin 18-24 aylık bebekler üzerindeki etkilerini ebeveyn görüşleri doğrultusunda kullanılma gerekçesi, kullanıldığında ya da kullanılmadığında oluşan duygu değişimi ve bebeğin süreçteki tepki ve davranışları olarak belirlenen üç ana temayı ortaya çıkarmıştır. Bu sonuçlar, teknolojinin bebekler üzerindeki etkileri açısından tartışılmıştır.
This paper presents the fusion of project‐based learning (PBL) and collaborative learning (CL) cohesively, coordinated with sensors and Bluetooth advancements, open‐source programming, and open‐source equipment devices, in a specific microcontroller and installed frameworks designing apply autonomy course for the elementary learners. The major purpose of this study is to evaluate the significance of integrating PBL and CL. The course creates capacities and abilities in critical thinking, problem‐solving, independent learning, collaboration, and specialized technical information. Since PBL alone does not guarantee profoundly talented cooperation, it was supplemented with CL. This structure coordinated course substance and understudy pragmatic accomplishment in a reenacted learning environment. The understudies built a line following and Bluetooth‐controlled robots by actualizing control programming on the “Arduino” open‐source platform, just as utilizing remote interchanges as Arduino offers an instinctive advancement condition and different equipment and programming resources that permit quick improvement of microcontroller‐based ventures. The basic findings of this study work reveal that teaching, learning, and student assessment processes can be improved by using PBL when integrated with CL. The research successfully extends onto another group of learners for preparing similar gadgets under different timelines. In addition, this paper also discusses upon the problem identification, selection of the equipment, circuit design, hardware mounting, and critical analysis of the results acquired from the course through the personal learning experience of the teachers as well as in the form of feedback from the two groups of young learners.
Full-text available
Anliegen dieser Forschungsarbeit war es, Möglichkeiten und Wirkungen des Einsatzes von Lernsoftware auf das mathematische Lernen zu untersuchen. Aus diesen Erkenntnissen werden Folgerungen und Kriterien für den Einsatz und die Gestaltung von Lernsoftware, besonders zur Förderung von Kindern mit erhöhtem Förderbedarf in den ersten Schuljahren, abgeleitet. Neben theoretischen Überlegungen und Analysen zu mathematischen Lernprozessen und zum Lernen mit digitalen Lernmedien wurde in der empirischen Studie unter natürlichen Bedingungen die Interaktion zwischen Kindern mit erhöhtem Förderbedarf beim Erwerb grundlegender mathematischer Kompetenzen und aktuell verfügbarer Lernsoftware analysiert und daraus Gestaltungshypothesen für digitale Lernmedien zur Förderung des Verständnisses von Zahlen und Operationen abgeleitet. Das Forschungsdesign ist durch qualitativ-interpretierende Methoden geprägt. Schülerinnen und Schüler mit besonderem Förderbedarf beim Erwerb grundlegender mathematischer Kompetenzen wurden in weitgehend natürlichen Arbeits- und Lernsituationen am Computer beobachtet und anschließend über eine mehrperspektivische Analyse der Datenaufzeichnung die Wechselwirkung zwischen Medieneigenschaften und mathematischen Lernprozessen erforscht. Dazu wurden den Kindern – angepasst an den jeweiligen Förderbedarf und die bearbeiteten Themen im Mathematikunterricht – aktuell verfügbare Übungen zur Förderung von grundlegendem Zahl- und Operationsverständnis sowie zur Rechenfertigkeit den Kindern angeboten. Fast alle Lernsoftwareprodukte gehörten dabei der Kategorie Übungs- und Automatisierungssoftware an. Der Fokus der Analyse lag auf der Wirkung inhaltsbezogener medialer Gestaltungsaspekte auf das mathematische Lernen und Denken der Kinder. Analyseschwerpunkte bildeten die Rolle von Veranschaulichungsmitteln und deren Verknüpfung mit symbolischen Darstellungen sowie die Wirkung von Rückmeldungen und Hilfen auf Zahl- und Operationsvorstellungen und die angewendeten Mengenerfassungs- und Rechenstrategien der Kinder.
Abstract The present study analysed the strategies and interactions of 60 7-year-old children working on LOGO tasks in gender pairs (girls, boys and boy/ girls). The results revealed that initially there were significant differences on some performance variables, based on gender, in one of the tasks. However, these disappeared when the task was changed to one with a focus on accuracy. By the end of the study differences in performance were found to be associated with the application of higher order strategies for problem-solving. The research investigated the nature of the early differences between the groups by examining the strategies and interactions of the pairs of children. The study highlights the importance of considering both the type of task and performance over a reasonable period of time when describing the nature and extent of young children's learning when problem solving in a novel environment.
Preschool children's interactions while working on problem-solving tasks were investigated. In Study I, preschool children were observed working on learning games at a computer. Sharing, verbal and nonverbal instruction, and initiation of interaction were recorded. Sixty-three percent of the children's time at the computer was spent with a peer, and they often spontaneously shared and instructed each other.Age-related increases in time spent at the computer, as well as in self-initiation of interaction and sharing, were evident. No differences were found between boys' and girls' activities at the computer. In Study II, children were observed while working with jigsaw puzzles. In this context, children worked with peers just 7% of the time, and exhibited far fewer instances of cooperative interaction. The results of the research indicate that preschool children can engage in cooperative social interaction and instruction, and that under certain circumstances this activity may aid problem-solving. The research provides evidence that even children younger than school age can work effectively at computers. Moreover, the findings contradict common stereotypes about gender differences and social isolation from effects of computers.
Staff development practices for integrating technology in early childhood education programs Young children: Active learners in a technological age, page 104. National Association for the Education of Young Children
  • C Hohmann
C. Hohmann. Staff development practices for integrating technology in early childhood education programs. In J.L. Wright and D.D. Shade, editors, Young children: Active learners in a technological age, page 104. National Association for the Education of Young Children., Washington, DC, 1994.
Computers and classrooms: The status of technology in U.S. schools
  • R J Coley
  • J Cradler
  • P K Engel
R.J. Coley, J. Cradler, and P.K. Engel. Computers and classrooms: The status of technology in U.S. schools. Educational Testing Service, Princeton, NJ, 1997.
When word processors come into the classroom
  • M Cochran-Smith
  • J Kahn
  • C L Paris
M. Cochran-Smith, J. Kahn, and C.L. Paris. When word processors come into the classroom. In J.L hoot and S.B. Silvern, editors, Writing with computers in the early grades, pages 43-74. New York: Teachers College Press, 1988.
Listen to the children: Observing young children's discoveries with the microcomputer
  • J L Wright
J.L. Wright. Listen to the children: Observing young children's discoveries with the microcomputer. In J.L. Wright and D.D. Shade, editors, Young children: Active learners in a technological age, pages 3-17. National Association for the Education of Young Children, Washington, DC, 1994.