Almost every family has smartphones, and many families also have tablets. Children adopt these mobile devices from an early age with their parents and older siblings. But do they belong in the daycare center?
Since media are part of children’s living environment, they should also be a topic in the daycare center. The children come to the group with media experiences from home and tell what they saw on YouTube yesterday or what big brother played on mom’s smartphone. At this point, the daycare center is in demand as an educational institution. This does not mean that the children learn how to swipe around on the tablet. This is not even necessary, because the little ones learn the wiping technique quite naturally at the age of one to two years. It’s more about the children learning what media actually are, what they’re about, and what you can do with them.
Digital media should be used in the daycare center just like other media, e.g. books – to learn and discover through play. You can use these devices to express yourself creatively instead of just passively consuming: discover the forest on a photo safari, make an animated film together, watch a multimedia picture book, and much more. The aim of using media in daycare centers is to promote media literacy. This means making children strong enough for a sovereign life in dealing with media. Of course, media work in the daycare center should be age-oriented to the basic needs and interests of the children and support their development in every way. And most importantly, the children’s media skills are promoted jointly by the daycare center and parents. Do you know if your daycare center has a media concept? Just ask!