Children’s imagination and curiosity: Facilitating and documenting through technology

Canning, Natalie; Payler, Jane and Horsley, Karen (2016). Children’s imagination and curiosity: Facilitating and documenting through technology. In: 26th EECERA (European Early Childhood Education Research Association) Conference, 2016, 31 Aug - 03 Sep 2016, Dublin City University, Dublin, Ireland.

Abstract

This research explores children's imagination and curiosity through the 'Our Story' App. Practitioners support children creating their own stories using pictures, text, sound and video. The 'Our Story' App has been previously researched in relation to supporting children's reading, verbal responses and parent-child talk (Kucirkova et al, 2014, 2015). The research is underpinned by sociocultural theory. Social interaction and imagination motivates children's interests which are socially constructed through cultural trends. An ethnographic study involving childminders and Early Childhood practitioners in focus group participation and online blog. Experiences of facilitating children's imagination and curiosity documented with 'Our Story' App are explored through case study narratives. Ethical dilemmas are inevitably raised when children are participants in research. The British Educational Research Association (BERA) revised guidelines (2011) were adhered to in relation to researching children. The 'Our Story' App provides a tool for children to record their own explorations from their perspective. Although a positive experience for both children and practitioners it opens debate into the use of technology in supporting practice and facilitating children's development. It provides opportunities to develop understanding of children's creative approaches in everyday situations using technology. This has implications for the ways in which practitioners will facilitate, support and document children's development in the future.

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