NAEYC has come forth this year with a position statement for the use of technology with young children. And it is in favor of using technology – “We believe that when used appropriately, technology and interactive media have tremendous potential to nurture early learning and development,” added Rita Catalano, Executive Director for the Fred Rogers Center. ( from A joint position statement of the National Association for the Education of Young Children and the Fred Rogers Center for Early Learning and Children’s Media at Saint Vincent College.)


What does this mean?

  • Who is NAEYC? Founded in 1926, The National Association for the Education of Young Children (NAEYC) is the world’s largest organization working on behalf of young children. It sets standards of excellence for programs and teachers in early childhood education. NAEYC members include teachers, center directors, trainers, college educators, families of young children, and the public.
  • What is the Fred Rogers Center?  Mr. Rodgers from TV had great concern that media be used innovatively for the good of children and he put  money aside to support those efforts.
  • What are the major requirements for technology programs determined from this 3 year study and the position statement?  Programs must be “intended” and “DAP”.
  • What is ‘intended”?  you need a plan or a curriculum because it does not benefit children from just providing the hardware and some software.
  • What is “DAP” ? Developmentally appropriate practice means you know the level of development of the child and have activities that are not beyond or below the child but appropriate. This might be the single most important factor in a program as the goal is to enhance not hurt.
  • Why should a parent care?  Thanks to a rich body of research, we know much about how young children grow, learn, play, and develop. There has never been a more important time to apply principles of development and learning when considering the use of cutting-edge technologies and new media.
  • What does it take? It takes time, effort, and money that must be invested in developing a curriculum that can be used across a large number of children’s centers to cover that cost.
  • What has been the reaction of children’s centers and child professionals in response? Not unexpectedly – it has been why, what, how, and when do we have to do this. And the resistance came quickly and continues. But some centers have chosen to partner with an organization that has been providing a quality program using technology – for over 25 years.
  • What you need to do? Find out what your center offers and decide if it meets your needs. Perhaps even look up the position statement online.  Ask for help in what you can do with your child from at home. There are resources for you.
  • Like almost everything today there are advantages and disadvantages to do something – mostly having to do with how you do it.  Quality is what differentiates the good from the bad. You cannot make the general statement that technology is bad or it is good. It is always relevant to the specifics of what is being done.


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