From Theory to Practice. Welcome to the NAEYC Technology Position Statement Implementation Page

Essential links:
• Download the position statement document. Have a look.
• Watch Chip Donohue's Presentation


NAEYC Technology and Young Children Position Statement Revision Draft! Send in comments by May 13...

A draft of Technology in Early Childhood Programs Serving Children from Birth through Age 8, the revision of the NAEYC position statement, is now available for review at

On their website, NAEYC has posted a request for comments: "The National Association for the Education of Young Children will be accepting comments for the Technology and Young Children--Ages 3 through 8 position statement through July 30, 2010. We encourage anyone who has an interest in the well-being and education of young children and technology use to share their thoughts and suggestions." There is also a request to fill out a tech survey, to help inform the revision statement.

We can discuss/share comments about the questions NAEYC has posed on this wiki and/or individuals can fill out the NAEYC surveys mentioned above and let your voice/opinion be heard, around these important issues. Guidance on what is being covered and what is not follows the questions (can be seen below.)

NAEYC would like input on:

How have the uses of technology changed classroom settings since this was last updated in 1996?
  • Various technologies have changed interaction patterns in some cases. Physically larger technologies such as the smart boards are engaging to children, foster child-to-child interaction, and allow teachers to coordinate technological and other learning centers more easily "keeping on eye on" and guiding work at the smart boards and other centers. Smaller technologies, from cameras to iPods and iPads are being used in some locations to both record and reflect on work and to make technology use less isolated from other work. However, these are, I suspect, exceptions where teachers are using technology and using it well. Limited professional development and biases continue to limit overall technology use.
  • Increased availability/use of various types of technology, as mentioned above, in the society at large (computers, digital cameras) and the internet impact amount/types of technology use in classrooms.
  • technologies (note the plural) are everywhere, in every facet of society... NOT just in schools, workplaces, laboratories. And NOT just the wealthy have access to technology. Very young children know how to program the microwave and TV. Even children young as two can work a computer mouse and locate some pictures on the computer using a search engine.

What concerns do you have about the uses of technology in the classroom from the perspective of a teacher or a parent?
  • Concerns are not about technology per se but misuses. My report for the National Math Advisory Panel concluded that "Engaging students with high-quality software, implemented well, can raise students’ achievement compared to instruction that does not incorporate those technologies." Those are two large caveats. Teachers, for many reasons, including lack of professional development, may find that high-quality software is still difficult to find. It is even more difficult to implement well, due to institutional support and other constraints.
  • "Misuses" may reflect a lack of "in-depth training and ongoing support to be adequately prepared to make decisions about technology and to support it's effective use in learning environments for children" called for in the original position statement. My concern is that people providing inservice and preservice training need to be themselves comfortable and knowledgeable in this area, and that there are not sufficient supports in place for that to happen, or a shared understanding/commitment to the importance of learning/teaching about this topic to support young children growing up in a world surrounded by technology use.
  • That there should be conversations about intentional use of technology to connect on-screen and off-screen activities. For example, to support understanding and appreciation of nature and the natural world, how can digital cameras, microscopes, computers be connected and encourage outdoor nature studies. In an increasingly technological world, how can we be sure that things we value, about relationships/connection/community, children's voice/expression/access to learning (for example, video clip/story of children's block structure for later review/revisiting) are enhanced and strengthened through technology choices, not replaced by them.
  • The basic concept of "Integrate, Don't Isolate" that Daniel Shade presented to audiences eager to figure out this relationship of technology to Young children in the 90's ...still holds Integration is the way the brain learns and then can recall.
    Perhaps integration of technology as support tools to enhance connections between concepts and subject areas needs to be presented in teacher education programs in novel ways... (see my full Discussion in the Discussion area)
    Why not consider what young children may need to know and be able to do in the 21st century (The Partnership for 21st Century Skills and include courses in a teacher education program of study such as....?:
    --Integrating learning experiences through modern technologies
    --Multiliteracy Curriculum projects which stimulate learning
    --Media, technologies, and other educational materials across the disciplines
    --Collaboration and social networking

What are some examples of what has been effective in your classroom setting?
  • For computer use, starting off with fewer software programs, making sure teachers have opportunities to try out/become familiar with the activities/choices available in the software, and to consider how to introduce and use the computer/software with children in intentional ways to support learning goals.
  • With digital cameras, becoming familiar with various aspects of the camera/how it works (including the ability to record digital video clips of activities, for observations) , how to organize and manage photos/use photo management software to more easily create projects. It is important to consider the "workflow" issues/steps from taking a photo to using it in a project, to "work smarter" and do this in the most efficient manner.

What concepts should be addressed in the revision?
  • There has been considerable research, classroom-based, since that time, both that involved technology and that involved learning and development and thus has implications for technology (see, e.g., the importance of science and math in children's development, as well as debates about the roles of metacognitive and regulatory skills). These should be employed.
  • While many key concepts in the 1996 position statement still ring true; the importance of the teacher role regarding technology use, providing learning opportunities integrating technology that are age, individually, culturally appropriate, potential benefits, importance of equitable access, adults becoming familiar with technology to advocate for it's appropriate use and to use it for their own productivity and professional development, the path to making this happen may feel even more elusive. As technology use increases, and the development of new and different types of technologies that can be used in classrooms, including mobile devices (such as "smart phones", ipods, ipad) continues to accelerate, early childhood education programs/teachers will need to be very intentional and dedicated about seeking out support and resources needed to take advantage of these new tools to benefit children. Emphasizing the importance of the program/teacher to make this effort, to not only use technology in ways that align with the program's educational philosophy, support educational efforts of children and adults in the community ( including strengthening home-school communication) but to model and start conversations about the use of technology both inside and outside of the classroom (strengthening/supporting the suggestion for advocacy, in a world where children are surrounded by technology).
  • If examples are provided, looking for/highlighting programs that have had some success in identifying/recognizing common challenges to technology integration, such as insufficient time/resources for adults to learn about technology, help children learn with conflicting educational demands/etc. and coming up with solutions could be helpful.

What is the Technology and Young Children position statement about?
  • It is about the uses of technology in a classroom setting, including but not limited to computers, software, cameras, mp3 players, and video recorders.
  • It is about identifying the role of teachers in introducing technology use in the classroom.
  • It is about integrating technology in a developmentally appropriate way in the typical learning environment.
  • It is about access to technology.
What is not part of the Technology and Young Children position statement?
  • It is not about television screen time for children in a home setting.
  • It is not about how parents should use technology at home, although they can follow similar guidelines as those established for the classroom.
  • It is not about violence in the media. (The Violence in the Lives of Children position statement addresses this issue.)

Resources- let's them here...
NAEYC Technology and Young Children Interest Forum has a collection of links, including to Research, and various information sharing/exchange projects about technology use with/to benefit young children that you can learn about at If you have a resource that supports the concept of the technology position statement you do not see on this website, and/or /feel all early educators learning about technology and young children should know about, please list it here:
International Society for Technology in Education NETS (National Educational Technology Standards)

*Note, you will need to sign up for a free Wikispaces account and join this group to contribute ideas to this wiki page. Go to to sign up, then click on the "Join Now" box, and put in your username, password, e-mail address, and, optionally, wiki name. Video tours of how to get started can be viewed here:

Background/history: Tech Interest Forum "meeting" call/background about the NAEYC Technology and Young Children Position Statement revision process.On the call were Lynn Hartle & Ilene Berson (Tech and YC Interest Forum co-facilitators), Bonnie Blagojevic, Diane Bales, Madhavi Parikh, Jerlean Daniel, Jocelyn Smrekar, Warren Buckleitner, Chip Donahue, Mark Bailey, Sue Griebling. For those who missed it, the call was recorded: Free Conference Play Back Number: (641) 715-3404 Access Code: 183422# From Mark Bailey's notes from the call:
  • There was agreement Naeyc needed to help people get past the aversion to technology, and those who misuse tech.
  • In July, the board agreed to revise it. NAEYC made the decision to partner with the Fred Rogers Center for Early Learning and Children's Media (a place where ECE people and people involved in the media could come together for a positive impact in behalf of YC
  • They are just gearing up. NAEYC will partner with them because they have some access to expertise: two current Fred Rogers Media Center Fellows, Chip Donahue, and Roberta Schomburg.
  • The Fred Rogers Center will take the lead on the revision, within the NAEYC process.
  • Drafts written by the Fred Rogers Center Fellows will be sent out, worked on, revised and worked on again. The Fred Rogers center Fellows, Chip and Roberta will be the lead writers.
  • Somewhere in the 6-10 people range will be the work group. NAEYC wants to include somebody from this forum. Time line not yet nailed down.
  • Clearly they are interested in input from us. NAEYC, Jerlean and Madhavi Parikh (NAEYC staff person) will keep us posted regarding the work
  • Any ideas for this writing effort could be CC to Roberta, Chip and Madhavi.
  • REACTIONS/IDEAS regarding the new NAEYC Position Statement regarding technology:
  • Just wondering, if there are Web 2.0 tools like Dabbleboard for image mapping (for those of us who are visual learners-not sure if others have found a better free web-based collaborative image mapping tool) or Google Docs for topic framework, that would help us to "see" and react to content structure/ideas for this new position paper, in the conceptual stage. Chip, sounds like there is alot of interest in this group to contribute, and that you would welcome input/suggestions. Not sure if you are thinking sooner than later, or if any of these tools might be helpful. Just an idea...