Using the Tools of Technology

  • Recently, the American Academy of Pediatrics lifted its recommendation discouraging all electronic media use in children under the age of 2. I have to wonder if they caved to media pressure, as I believe parents should think long and hard before intentionally re-wiring their child's developing brain through the use of electronics.

    The new recommendations for children's media use acknowledge that some media exposure can have educational value for children as young as 18 months, but they immediately qualify that by stating that the content should be high-quality programming—the AAP specifically referenced "Sesame Street" and children's programming provided by PBS. They emphasize that parents should watch those programs with their children, and absolutely not use the television as a babysitter for infants and toddlers. And families should still prioritize "unplugged" playtime and parents can go a long way in modeling that behavior.

    At AES we utilize Chromebooks and iPads in the classroom and iMacs In our computer lab. We learn about computers as tools, and how to select the appropriate tool for the task. in recent years, we have migrated to online applications, chief among them, the Google Suite for Education. All students in third and fourth grade have Google Drives that they are able to access from both home and school, which have had a transformative effect on instruction.