Hey Cool Momma! Did you know you can use your Apple Phone to record your voice? If you want to record a goodnight/good morning song (working moms), short message, alphabet song or record a message to calm your child while he/she is at childcare, this is a great tech option. Find a text buddy (grandma, teacher, parent) and send your message. These can also be downloaded for email use.
Here is a list of ways to connect preschool learning with technology:
Technology in learning is booming right now. Not only are teachers seeking for innovative ways to integrate technology into learning, parents are having to also integrate their devices into their child’s learning.
1. Take nature walk photos and print them:
🍁 Take a short nature walk around your house, neighborhood or park. Take pictures of the things you see (I.e. leaves, trees, flowers, dirt, water puddle). After the walk, print the photos and allow your child to glue them in a journal (this can be a spiral notebook or made with construction paper).
2. Letter/Shape Tracing
Letter tracing can be done using FaceTime, Google Duo, and iOS Messages for immediate free options. There are many letter tracing apps available on iOS and Android, as well such as the ABC Kids App.
To enhance the fun: Find a messaging buddy for your child (i.e. teacher/parent) to exchange the letter messages between parent/child/educator. The teacher can send the letter via message and allow the child to respond with their hand written letter.
3. Story time
YouTube Kids offers free and short story time videos for young children like The Very Hungry Spider. To gauge attention, stick to engaging/short videos. Parents can pause the videos to discuss what is being seen in the video.
If you have a touch screen device, the use of E-Books can allow your child the opportunity to “turn the page” of the story as you read aloud. Using E-books allows the parent to be involved in the learning experience and the child to be actively present in the story by presuming responsibility for turning the pages or scrolling to the next page. Free E-Books are not as difficult to find as in the past. Oxford Owl has an online E-Book library that can be categorized by age group and made downloadable. Also, Free Kids Books has a library of online e-books ready to download for Free.
5. Record Dramatic Play
Record your child playing dress up. Make it into a movie! Dress up with your child and act out a scene. Afterwards, play back the movie using your device and talk about it with them.
Upon downloading the app on iOS, there was an immediate prompt to select “Parent” or “Child.” When the “Child” prompt is selected, the user is automatically redirected back to the “Parent” navigation. In other words, a parent profile and 4-digit code must be created first.
Once the 4-digit pin is created, along with entering a simple multiplication mathematical problem into the security check, the “Child” profile can be created. At this point, the age range of the child is inquired. Upon selection of the age range, a series of video categories will appear.
The categories include: “Recommended, Shows, Reading, Learning and Explore.” Under each category, the user will find age appropriate videos sub-categorized based on varying topics/channels/series.
Under the “Settings,” parents have the option to control content, reset password, and even turn of search engine as means of safety. The option to stop the “Recommended” video feature is also available to turn off/on.
Screen time is always a concern when integrating technological applications into the lives of young children. The overall objective is to provide interactive learning experiences remotely or on-the-go. However, parents should err on the side of caution and monitor the amount of screen time their child engages within. Unstructured screen time can lead to lifelong illnesses including obesity. For more information on how to effectively promote healthy screen time for young child, visit The Mayo Clinic.
YouTube Kids has proven to provide quality, free screen time to young children through their efforts to expand the apps functions. We can only hope that this is all the beginning!