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Early Years ICT @ WCC

Date: April 4, 2016 Author: Admin Categories: Blog, General, News

In Aistear, the theme of Communicating is about children sharing their experiences, thoughts, ideas, and feelings with others with growing confidence and competence in a variety of ways and for a variety of purposes.

With this in mind and using the Aims and Learning Goals for Communicating* we want to further develop learning opportunities for our pre-school and school age children using ICT. ICT role play will continue as usual for everyone but with the introduction of our new Early Years ICT Programme for pre-school and school age children we’re opening up endless possibilities for play and learning.

 

We are embracing technology every day from the moment we enter our centre using the front door buzzer and keypad. Take into consideration some of our Green School’s initiatives like swapping our florescent lights for LEDs, taking meter readings or using cloud-based technology for recording and uploading children’s activities to parents’ phones, laptops and tablets and you can see that technology has a place and function all around us. Other ways in which technology is embedded in our day includes the use of ICT (Information & Communications Technology) naturally by the children whether on messages to our office to use the photocopier, place phone calls internally or watch the action unfold on our security cameras. Also, we google topics for all kinds of additional information e.g. with supervision our children use google maps to surmise distance of travel between places, modes of transport, time, etc. Even out and about in town we watch the clock in the taxi calculate our fare, then watch eagerly as a selection of computerised machinery make hot chocolate for us as a treat and so on our ICT journey goes…

Children Computer

With all this unfolding before us naturally, ideas started to emerge as to how we could develop ICT within our centre and then a few months ago we were given a present by CTM Computers of 4 computers which still had life in them and our ideas went into overdrive! Now from April 2016 we have plans in place to roll out our very own Early Years ICT Programme for our pre-school and school age children. It’s such an exciting innovative opportunity for all of us—another first for WCC!

 

Our pre-school children will build simple competencies using ICT though child-friendly and age-appropriate early language, literacy and maths programmes. We will also google topics to support our Montessori Culture, History and Geography.

 

Our school age children are going to learn Scratch which is a programming language and online community where we can create your own interactive stories, games, and animations. We have also joined the Khan Academy to use as a research and information platform to supplement project work as well as homework.

 

Throughout the centre we will plan different projects e.g. we will use digital photographs, tape recorders, camcorders, etc. to investigate living things like insects in our flowerbeds, watch nest building from a distance, buds flowering, light changing and much more! This will extend our opportunities to investigate, make sense of our environment and record our thoughts and ideas.

 

Communicating

Aim 3 Children will broaden their understanding of the world by making sense of experiences through language.

In partnership with the adult, children will

  1. Use language to interpret experiences, to solve problems, and to clarify thinking, ideas and feelings
  2. Use books and ICT for fun, to gain information and broaden their understanding of the world
  3. Build awareness of the variety of symbols (pictures, print, and numbers) used to communicate, and understand that these can be read by others
  4. become familiar with and use a variety of print in an enjoyable and meaningful way
  5. Have opportunities to use a variety of mark-making materials and implements in an enjoyable and meaningful way.
  6. Develop counting skills and a growing understanding of the meaning and use of numbers and mathematical language in an enjoyable and meaningful way.

As always, we welcome your feedback, ideas, help and support.