Examples of Technology Integration Honoring the
NAEYC Position Statement on Technology
When used appropriately, technology and media can enhance children’s cognitive and social abilities
FlipGrid is a video recording app that allows students to read a prompt, and respond via video. In addition to submitting their response to a prompt, they are encouraged and able to respond to other student contributions. This video sharing, with a cap of 90 seconds, allows for equity of voice, and allows students to hear multiple viewpoints and explanations.
In the classroom, FlipGrid has spiced up our collaborative learning. In addition to students listening to their peers in their home teams talk, they are also able to click on certain peers and listen to their responses. The ability to give verbal feedback encourages a supportive community.
One instance where FlipGrid showed its ability to honor all learners was during our unit on Plate Tectonics. The 2nd graders were using FlipGrid to record themselves explaining the process of plates moving towards each other (convergent), all while using hand gestures. Peer collaboration allowed for one friend to be filming, while another was acting. That night though, students were accessing FlipGrid from their homes, watching each other’s videos and giving praise, as well as constructive feedback. By setting the parameters in class for sharing glows and grows, students felt comfortable responding in their personal time. The authentic transfer of community from school to home allowed FlipGrid to become a safe haven for feedback and contribution.
Interactions with technology and media should be playful and support creativity, exploration, pretend play, active play, and outdoor activities.
GooseChase is a digital platform that allows teachers to create scavenger hunts and truly gamify the learning experience. This playful, community building type of learning encourages students to get up, move, and explore with their content. GooseChase can be utilized in the classroom or community.
In the community, I have used GooseChase to create scavenger hunts around the neighborhood and lead staff on a team exploration of the community we serve. Using this as a team-bonding experience on in-service day allowed for teachers to connect, collaborate, and get to know one another.
Community exploration has also included students going on a GooseChase around a museum. After studying Plants for 8 weeks, my 2nd graders went tearing through the National Botanical Gardens. Students were able to use the GooseChase platform in teams of 4, and were given multiple opportunities to respond. Students could provide constructed response answers, were I controlled the ‘correct,’ or ‘incorrect answer,’ or open-ended responses where they could type freely. Picture and video responses allowed to documentation and explanation.
Assistive technology must be available as needed to provide equitable access for children with special needs.
Technology tools can help educators make and strengthen home–school connections.
Voxer is a walkie-talkie app that allows for verbal communication back and forth. I have used this app in my first grade classroom to support learners with the CCSS of Speaking and Learning. In our classroom, we have speaking routines that students are prompted to follow during the school day, but sometimes, we need extra practice! Using Voxer with my students outside of school allowed for me to as questions, and prompt students to respond using full sentences.
Example Conversation on Voxer–
Mrs. Terlop: How was your day, Ian?
Mrs. Terlop: I am glad your day was good! Can you please say your sentence again by reusing some of my words? How was your day, Ian?
Ian: My day was great!
Digital literacy is essential to guiding early childhood educators and parents in the selection, use, integration, and evaluation of technology and interactive media.
Dragon Dictation is a speech to text app that allows scholars to speak freely, and the app types their words. This is an empowering device for students who have limited fine motor control, or need help capturing their thoughts in entirety.
Technology tools can be effective for dual language learners by providing access to a family’s home language and culture while supporting English language learning.
Reading A-Z is a free account that can be used for up to 30 downloads and prints of leveled literacy books. Teachers and parents alike can print appropriately leveled resources for students in their home languages. This website allows for students to be supported in the form of physical resources, printed at leisure, and permits cultural integration of having text in a variety of languages.
KidBlog is a free website accessible to students or classes that allows for an introduction to blogging, or responding to directed prompts. KidBlog, as an interactive platform, has security measures that ensure that teachers can approve comments and feedback before students post them. This allows teachers the opportunity to explain and reinforce parameters and guidelines when it comes to online interactions.
On this site, students have the ability to write their own blog, read others, and comment or respond to peers. Having this platform available for students reinforces typing skills, digital citizenship, and responding to peers in a non-verbal way.