Young children's digital play in early childhood settings: Curriculum, pedagogy and teachers' knowledge

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Research indicates that children’s digital play practices seem to be in advance of teachers’ adaptation of curriculum and pedagogical approaches to incorporate digital technologies, digital media and popular culture, and the potential for learning that these materials generate. This chapter aims to present examples from the empirical data in order to raise questions about how teachers can make sense of children’s converged play in relation to the curriculum. It presents the research literature that identifies the gap between children’s converged play and curriculum and pedagogy in early childhood education settings. The chapter describes the conceptual framework, combining contemporary iterations of socio-cultural theories, with theories of children’s interests, funds of knowledge, and converged play. It illustrates how teachers in the “New Play Pedagogies” project shifted their understanding of digital technologies, digital media and popular culture, and how children’s interests and practices could be integrated into the early childhood curriculum.


Institute for Learning Sciences and Teacher Education

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Book Chapter

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