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Weekly News Roundup 4th September

In this week's news we consider emerging evidence of the effects of flipped learning. We also discuss research on pre-schoolers' tablet use and on European parents' strategies for mediating their children's technology use.

Review of flipped learning

A review of 28 articles on flipped learning has investigated what effect this style of learning may have on performance and student satisfaction. There is evidence that flipped lessons have higher student satisfaction rates compared with ‘traditional lessons’. The review also finds some indirect evidence of improvements in student performance, but importantly these are only short term effects. It is suggested that flipped learning has the capacity to support lifelong learning and 21st century skills, but that there is currently insufficient evidence to prove this. The review also argues that there is a need for more teacher training, and that in many schools there is a misunderstanding of the relationship between pre-tasks and lesson time and how to design flipped learning.

Tablet and app use amongst pre-schoolers revealed

Researchers at the Faculty of Social Sciences at the University of Sheffield have announced preliminary findings from a study designed to reveal how pre-schoolers use tablets and apps. The ‘Technology and Play project’ aimed to discover how effective apps were at promoting play and creativity amongst preschool children aged 0-5 years old. This included apps that incorporated augmented reality to promote play. The survey, completed by 2000 parents of children aged 0-5, revealed that a quarter of children aged 0-2 and 36% of those aged 3-5 have their own tablets. On average, these children spent 1 hour and 19 minutes using a tablet on a typical weekday and 1 hour 23 minutes at the weekend. Young children (0-2 years old) spent slightly more time using tablets compared with their their older counterparts (3-5 years old). It is suggested that this may be because the older group was attending nursery, preschool or other organised activities. During the week, children were using tablets for more traditional purposes such as creative activities; drawing and painting, as well as reading and to support learning. During the weekend, children were more likely to use their tablets for watching videos and playing games on apps.

Read more here.

Nordic parents lead the way on digital parenting

UK parents strategies for managing children’s internet use are at best ‘patchy, tending to rely on ad hoc observation’ according to a European Commission study looking at under eights behaviour on the internet. Sonia Livingstone, professor in media and communications at LSE and an author of the report, says ‘British parents are among the most fearful and confused when it comes to allowing their children access to the internet’. Southern European parents were more restrictive over internet use and Nordic parents were the most relaxed, monitoring and guiding their children while allowing them creative freedom. The Telegraph newspaper has put together a parents’ guide to cybersecurity, aimed at answering some of the questions parents may have and describing the parental mediation strategies of several figureheads of digital technology.

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