Communicating, Collaborating and Creating Change at Fred Forward

This post was originally published at the Joan Ganz Cooney Center, and appears here with permission.  This spring, I was given an extremely exciting opportunity when the Fred Rogers Center named me an Early Career Fellow. The mission of the Fred Rogers Center is to advance the fields of early learning and children’s media by acting as a catalyst for communication,...

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Working Together to Design Great Games for Kids

Last year Common Sense Media found that in a two-year period, the average amount of time children spend using mobile devices had tripled. Kids of all ages (including those younger than 2) spend increasing amounts of time playing games and using apps on the family iPad. And among the debates about whether this digital deluge is good or bad for kids,...

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Playing Online

You may have heard young children in your life talking about time they spent online on sites like Webkinz or Club Penguin and you may wonder why your 7-year-old niece, for example, keeps going back for more. Virtual worlds are immersive 2-D or 3-D spaces in which users adopt an avatar, or online character, in order to represent themselves and interact...

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How Am I Doing? A Checklist for Identifying Exemplary Uses of Technology for Early Learning

Do technology tools and interactive media like iPads, cameras, or e-readers, belong in the early childhood classroom? If so, how should early childhood educators be using them? What are the best ways and when are the best times to use technology with very young kids in a classroom setting? The NAEYC-Fred Rogers Center position statement is meant to help educators answer...

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Ten Questions for Educators to Ask When Using Technology with Young Children

Do technology tools and interactive media like iPads, cameras, or e-readers, belong in the early childhood classroom? If so, how should educators be using them? At the Fred Rogers Center, we believe technology and interactive media do have the potential to help children learn in the early years, but only if they are used in intentional, developmentally appropriate ways. Here are...

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Study Shows Tech in the Classroom Boosts Math Skills for Youngest Learners

This week my colleagues at Education Development Center and SRI International and I are releasing findings from our Prekindergarten Transmedia Mathematics Study. This research is part of Ready to Learn, a partnership between the US Department of Education, the Corporation for Public Broadcasting, and PBS. The basic premise of Ready to Learn is that it marshals public media resources in...

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Three Words for Digital-Age Parents: Access, Balance, and Support

Here’s a given about being the parent of a young child—it’s exhausting. Mix in some unknowns like your child’s seemingly unnatural attraction to glowing screens, and it can be bewildering. What’s the right mix of apps and grass stains? Here’s another given. There is no “correct” answer, and you’re probably too busy to read a 15-page research synopsis, like the Fred...

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Children’s Museums: Spaces for 21st Century Play

This post orginally appeared at This week the Children’s Museum of Pittsburgh welcomes museum professionals from around the country for InterActivity 2013: Reimagining Children’s Museums. This is part of a three-year exploration of what it means to experience a children’s museum in the 21st century. In addition to educational conference panels, the Association of Children’s Museums asked four interdisciplinary design...

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