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Using ICT in early childhood education - report

Mon, 8 Nov 2004

Using ICT in early childhood education - report

A literature review on the use of information and communication technologies (ICT) in early childhood education has found it can enhance and transform young children's learning and development, Education Minister Trevor Mallard said today.

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The literature review, out today, has shown that if ICT is used effectively and appropriately, then it can encourage purposeful and exploratory play, collaboration, cooperation, discussion, creativity, problem solving, risk taking and flexible thinking. It can also assist with the development of early literacy and mathematics.

"This review shows that ICT has tremendous potential as another tool for improving teaching and learning in early childhood education, and we need to ensure that our early childhood educators are confident in utilising this tool effectively.

"Our government is investing heavily in developing high quality, accessible and affordable early childhood education.That's because quality early childhood education makes a key difference to how students do educationally later on," Trevor Mallard said.

The need for early childhood education centres to be aware of health and safety issues around children's use of ICT and addressing these issues in policies and practices is also discussed in the review.

The Ministry of Education commissioned the New Zealand Council for Educational Research to undertake the literature review on the role and potential of ICT in early childhood education settings both within New Zealand and worldwide.

The review is part of the development of an ICT strategy for early childhood education. The strategy is being developed in consultation with the early childhood education sector, and will provide a framework to support sector developments in ICT.

"The consultation discussions together with the literature review will provide important information for developing this ICT strategy for early childhood education," Trevor Mallard said.

The literature review report is available at www.minedu.govt.nz or from the Ministry of Education. Copies can also be obtained by phoning 0800 428 323.

ENDS


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