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Technology and Early Childhood Education

How Technology is Improving Security and Education for Daycares

Technology has spread to almost every industry—and education is no different. Technology is used throughout schooling around the United States, from preschools to universities. Take a look at this infographic to see how technology is being used to increase security, learning, and classroom organization in early childhood education centers across the country.

Biometric Technology

For many daycare centers, one of the biggest challenges is keeping students safe. Technology has come a long way to assist child care centers in keeping track of when children are dropped off, who is dropping them off, and who is taking care of them throughout the day.

Many daycare centers have invested in biometric technology like facial recognition and fingerprint scanners for visitor management and entry control, ensuring children are picked up and dropped off by verified adults only. Daycare teachers and other staff also use these technologies to clock in and clock out. Once parents, staff, or visitors use the biometric technology, office staff buzz them in through the door, ensuring that no unauthorized people enter the school.1

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Surveillance Cameras

Video surveillance has been commonly used in early childhood education centers for many years. These cameras help to ensure that only authorized personnel are entering the school, and also that teachers and other staff are properly caring for children. With the advancement of surveillance technology, many child care facilities are taking video surveillance to new levels.2

Throughout the country, numerous daycare centers are offering parents a daily view into the classroom through video surveillance streaming.3 Parents can check up on their children throughout the day using their computers or smartphones, helping them see exactly how their children are being cared for. This function also increases communication among teachers, parents, and office staff.

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Interactive Whiteboards

Many child care centers are incorporating technology education into their curricula. One example is Kiddie Academy Educational Child Care, which has locations throughout the United States. Each location uses a curriculum made up of four pillars: developmentally appropriate curriculum, health and fitness, character education, and technology education.4 By focusing on technology education, teachers can utilize computers and interactive whiteboards to help children explore technology and software on their own.

Another child care center with locations across the country, The Goddard School, focuses on technology in its curriculum. The Goddard School’s science, technology, engineering, arts, and mathematics (STEAM) program introduces technology to children at an early age. Depending on the age level of the children, technology education could include coding, robotics, interactive whiteboard education, and more.5

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Access to technology for early childhood educators6

88%

of educators have not had access to digital cameras

82%

have access to desktop or laptop computers

26%

have access to interactive whiteboards

Of educators who have access to interactive whiteboards and tablets, more than 50% used them in lessons at least once a week.7

E-Readers and Tablets

Children of all ages are increasingly exposed to touchscreen technology, whether through their parents’ smartphones or through their tablets at home. In fact, 98 percent of U.S. homes with children now have mobile devices like smartphones and tablets.8

Instead of trying to discourage the use of small screens among their students, many daycare centers are utilizing the technology in their lessons. This can include e-books that incorporate multimedia, such as music, illustrations, animation, sound effects, and outloud narrations. Studies show that children can benefit from studying in ways that incorporate several different medias.9

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Access to technology for early childhood educators10

55%

have access to tablet computers

20%

have access to e-readers

Attendance Tracking

In many cases, children are dropped off at daycare by one parent and picked up by another. As daycare centers enroll dozens of students, this can become confusing for office staff and teachers. Not knowing when a child was checked in, or who picked them up, can quickly become a security concern or liability.11 To make this process easier, many child care centers are switching to a form of digital time and attendance tracking, which can log drop-off and pickup times.

With technology like the ProCare Touch Computer, parents can simply tap a button on a check-in computer station when they drop off or pick up their child.12 Attendance tracking technology can also account for absences, checkouts for doctor’s appointments, half-days, and more. Attendance tracking technology can also collect student information like tuition balances, immunizations, and family members’ names.

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Classroom Organization

With so many children in each class, it can be a challenge to ensure proper classroom organization and communication with parents. At the end of the day, teachers might forget what time a child woke up from their nap, or exactly what they ate for lunch. With digital record keeping and parent forms, teachers can quickly input important information like this to ensure parents are always in the loop.

Tendly is a smartphone app that can be downloaded on parents’ smartphones and teachers’ classroom tablets.13 Teachers can quickly take and upload photos so that parents can see what their children are doing throughout the day. From teacher uploads, the app can also track children’s eating habits, potty times, sleeping patterns, and more. Parents can receive this information in real time through text messages and push notifications.14

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Conclusion: With the increasing advancements in child care technology, daycare centers can streamline daily classroom operations, no matter the age group or the teacher-to-student ratio. Increased communication and digital record keeping can only improve child care, as well as parents’ peace of mind.

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