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Media learning of young children and preschoolers

In the toddler age clearly better symbolic understanding is shown. Toddlers act out their own stories – alone or with peers. Typical of this is the “father-mother-child” game. Such games are important for children’s development: it increases social skills and strengthens, for example, attention, speech, imagination, and later also writing and reading skills. Many child-oriented films and television content take advantage of this: they show fictional worlds that children often act out themselves afterwards.

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Media competence also benefits children later, at school age! If children understand media symbols well, they can also learn language and mathematical content more easily in preschool and make better use of learning media.

The Internet, i.e. websites, do not yet play such a large role for preschool children compared to other media activities. The children use media for information about the living environment and for orientation for their own position in friendships and family. Educationally valuable media programs can provide assistance. You should make sure that the programs children use are also age-appropriate and do not teach behaviors that are harmful.

If you want to support your child in using media so that he or she can acquire digital media in a meaningful way, you should consider when this makes sense and what the support might look like. Moving beyond the daily read-aloud book to cinematic sequences or picture stories can be a start.

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