Monday, 11 May 2009

Smart table - A nursery perspective

The Smart table, whilst increasingly showing its worth across all the key stages, was originally purchased with early years in mind. To that end an opportunity arose for me to see how the table was approached by a nursery child, I seized the chance and spent some time observing a 3 year old boy interacting with the Smart Table.
  • Manipulation of images was quickly mastered and he easily moved the images around the screen, managing to resize images after being shown once.
  • Paint proved highly engaging and he enjoyed mark making on the table.
  • The height of the table was constricting and because of the angle of use his arms were registering as touches as well as his hands.
  • The level of engagement with the surface was encouraging, the pupil's normal very low attention span was held for approximately ten minutes.
  • Only used paint and media, need to think carefully how other activities can be adapted to engage yet challenge early years pupils.

For an initial play (still waiting to get the Smart table into the new school) I was encouraged by the experiment. Both the child and the accompanying member of mursery staff were engaged by the table. Unfortunately extremely limited communication skills prevented the child from giving any feedback on the table, nevertheless the engagement and attention precipitated by the table suggests that there is potential for the Smart Table to become a useable tool with nursery children.

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