21 July 2011

ebook

due to the heat wave that's upon us, i was looking today for a quiet indoor activity for the little girl. something she could sit in front of the fan and do. out of curiosity, i downloaded my first children's ebook to my ipad, then watched the little girl interact with it. this is the first time she's used my ipad and, with very little direction, she was able to figure out the interactive features of the story and work her way through the book. she even managed to find her way back to favorite pages and the accompanying activities. as an educator, it was amazing to watch. i truly regret that this photo is not a video. she was so engaged, so exuberant. and her laughter and excitement were contagious. now, tonight, i just can't stop puzzling over the educational merits of this sort of technology with young children.


14 comments:

Lynne said...

Older Grandson is just seventeen months old; for the past several months he has been able to turn the tv on and off and change channels on the set itself, knows what a remote does and which way to point it, and which way is "up" on a mobile phone! How do they do it?

chris said...

Lynne, that's exactly what i don't understand!

R. J. said...

That sounds so familiar because my grandchildren use their mom's Nook and their dad's IPad so much it is hard for the parents to get screen time. It is fun to watch the squeals and giggles of a two year old when he works with them. The six year old prefers to read ebooks more than paper books. She also loves the math features. I think all the electronics will help reluctant learners if only the schools could afford all of the gadgets.

susan t. landry said...

this may be farfetched, but when i was in a graduate program in interactive media a million years ago, we read the work of edmund carpenter, who was an anthropologist, studying the Inuit. he said once he had car trouble in an Inuit village and an Inuit man came to his aid. instead of standing at the front of the car, and looking under the hood, this guy moved all around the hood area, peering at it from many different angles at once. he quickly came up with a solution and fixed the car. Carpenter later learned that the Inuit are known to be excellent mechanics, and his hypothesis was that because they did not have a Roman-style linear written language that they were freed from the contraints of perceiving the task left to right, and thus were able to orient their intelligence far more usefully to the problem. maybe this is the same mechanism that is in play with your granddaughter, who may not yet be wholly corrupted by literacy!

Nora said...

Kids are not afraid to do things on computers. They aren't afraid they're going to 'break' them. We adults worry too much about what can possibly go wrong. It's easier to be a kid.

Janie B said...

My school is getting iPads for our K-2 kids this year. I know it will be exciting to watch them learn.

chris said...

R.J., i can see the same grandchild situation beginning here. the little girl was back this evening, and it's the first thing she wanted, so she could show her parents. susan, thanks for the interesting theory - it doesn't sound far-fetched! Nora, i agree with you that kids are fearless with technology. i love to watch the older kids mess about and figure things out. i was just so surprised to see it in a child so young. and Janie B, your k-2 kids are really lucky to be getting ipads. i'd be curious to hear what they'll be doing with them.

Suzy said...

Learning has become so much fun now. I am looking forward to my iPad. Thanks for posting.

Kate said...

It's amazing to see how comfortable kids are with technology. I think it's so important to keep in mind that they're growing up with this stuff, and things that have not changed to reflect the times will seem SOOOO old fashioned to them someday!

I linked this in my "Friday Five" this week over at Kate's Library. Have a great weekend!

chris said...

Suzy, hope you have as much fun with your ipad as i'm having with mine! Kate, i totally agree - isn't this an exciting time to be in education? thanks for the link on your blog!!

~she~ said...

I often have to ask my 12-year old son for help with my iPod or TV. Kids just understand things better than us!

Sweet Mess said...

The free-ness that kids bring to technology astounds me too.

Crosby Kenyon said...

It's truly upon us so hang on! I just hope it's all for the good.

TRX said...

To the last point on people giving up paperbacks for ebooks faster than giving up hardbacks for ebooks I think that makes perfect sense. I still want to have hardback copies of certain books, particularly non-fiction, religion and biographies on my shelves. But I have no desire to fill my shelves and take up space with random fiction paperbacks that I would probably have given away when I finished anyway.Miscellaneous