Techwise Infant and Toddler Teachers

Making Sense of Screen Media for Children Under 3

Patricia A. Cantor, Plymouth State University
Mary M. Cornish, Plymouth State University

Published 2016

Infants and toddlers—the so‐called “touchscreen generation” — are living in a screen mediasaturated world. They are the target market for ever‐growing numbers of apps, TV shows, electronic toys, and e‐books. Making sense of the complex issues associated with screen media in the lives of children under 3 can be challenging for the adults who care for them. There is a strong need among teachers (and parents) of infants and toddlers for guidance related to the appropriate role of screen media in early care and education.

Unlike most other books about technology in early childhood, this book focuses specifically on infants and toddlers. It explores why and how infant and toddler teachers need to be techwise in order to understand the implications of screen media for children’s learning and development. The book serves as a single, accessible resource to relevant research findings from the fields of pediatric medicine, child development, developmental psychology, social and behavioral sciences, and brain science. It provides infant/toddler teachers with a comprehensive approach and strategies to guide their decisionmaking and promote practices that are evidence‐based, family‐centered, culturally responsive, and collaborative. It is a call for teachers to think carefully and act wisely when making decisions about screen media—both the technology that they are encountering now and the technology they will encounter in the future—in order to optimize the learning and healthy development of infants and toddlers.

PREFACE: Becoming a Techwise Infant/Toddler Teacher. CHAPTER I: Survey the Screen Media Landscape for Infants and Toddlers. CHAPTER II: Examine Marketing Messages about Screen Media for Infants and Toddlers. CHAPTER III: Review the Research on Screen Media and Infant and Toddler Learning and Development. CHAPTER IV: Promote Infant and Toddler Learning and Development. CHAPTER V: Develop Program Policies about Screen Media Use. CHAPTER VI: Use Technology to Enhance Your Effectiveness as an Infant/Toddler Teacher. CHAPTER VII: Collaborate with Families and the Community to Promote Healthy Media Practices. CHAPTER VIII: Moving Forward as a Techwise Infant/Toddler Teacher.