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Technologies for Lifelong Kindergarten

Mitchel Resnick
Educational Technology Research and Development
Vol. 46, No. 4 (1998), pp. 43-55
Published by: Springer
Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/30220216
Page Count: 13
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Technologies for Lifelong Kindergarten
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Abstract

In kindergartens and early-elementary class-rooms, manipulative materials (such as Cuisenaire Rods and Pattern Blocks) play an important role in childrens learning, enabling children to explore mathematical and scientific concepts (such as number, shape, and size) through direct manipulation of physical objects. But as children grow older, and learn more advanced concepts, the educational focus shifts away from direct manipulation to more abstract formal methods. This paper discusses a new generation of computationally enhanced manipulative materials, called digital manipulatives, designed to radically change this traditional progression. These new manipulatives (such as programmable building bricks and communicating beads) aim to enable children to continue to learn with a kindergarten approach even as they grow olderand also to enable young children to learn concepts (in particular, systems concepts such as feedback and emergence) that were previously considered too advanced for them.

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