Community of Practice: Technology in Early Childhood: tantalising, terrible, tenacious or terrific


Price $176.50—240


National Quality Standard
QA1Educational program and practice
QA3Physical environment
QA6Collaborative partnerships with families and communities
Australian Professional Standards for Teachers
2Know the content and how to teach it
3Plan for and implement effective teaching and learning
4Create and maintain supportive and safe learning environments
6Engage in professional learning


Early Childhood Australia (ECA) Communities of Practice are online learning communities where members will have the opportunity to learn with and from each other. By exploring new ideas, sharing resources and lived experiences you will become part of a vibrant learning community.

In 2018, ECA launched a Statement on young children and digital technologies. This document outlines four areas for educators to consider when using technology: Relationships, Health and wellbeing, Citizenship, and Play and pedagogy. This community of practice will explore technology use in birth to five settings – drawing on the ECA statement, discussions with international experts and current research. The community allows educators to explore all aspects of technology – from terrible to terrific; to share experiences and develop new skills in using a range of technologies in their setting. Community members will select a project to explore within their context, or with peers from the community, and will have the opportunity to critically reflect on and extend their practice in a supportive environment.

Facilitated by Dr Kate Highfield

Dr Kate Highfield is an experienced teacher and researcher with an interest in how technology impacts on learning, pedagogy and play. Prior to her role as General Manager – Professional learning and research translation,

Kate spent over a decade working as a classroom teacher and then ten years working as a lecturer at Macquarie University in the Institute of Early Childhood and as a research fellow at RIPPLE (Research Institute for Professional Practice, Learning and Education).

Kate researches the impact of technology as a tool with young children, parents and educators. Kate’s current research focuses on the use of technology in the areas of Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts and Mathematics (STEAM), with a focus on touch technologies and tech-toys, including Interactive Screens, Tablets, iPads, robotics, smart toys and smartphones.

Learning outcomes

At the completion of this course participants will have:

  1. Considered their personal relationship with technology and how this impacts on their use of tools in their context
  2. Explored current research and reflected on how this impacts practice
  3. Examined and evaluated current tools for use with children
  4. Developed a project that extends or revises the use of technology in their context.

Learning schedule

By engaging in this community participants are committing to approximately 1 to 2 hours each week for a period of 8 weeks. This includes completion of modules, readings, online discussions and completion of a project that will be relevant to your work and setting. The following structure summarises this:

Week Learning
Week 1 Introduction and completion of a short (30 mins to 1 hour) module


Week 2

Online community meeting (Wednesdays between 3:30 – 4:30pm AEST).

Note all online meetings will be recorded for participants who cannot meet at this time and online discussion

Week 3, 4 and 5 Exploring research and practice. During these weeks educators will have a range of technologies to engage with including 2 modules, research papers, vodcasts with international experts and a series of short videos demonstrating technologies (eg Apps, robotics, tech toys and interactive tools). Participants will be able to reflect critically on these and engage in online discussions and meetings to reflect on their learning.


Weeks 67 Educators will complete a small project to extend or revise the use of technology in their setting. While completing this project educators will be supported online by the facilitator and the community.


Week 8  Educators will be invited to share their project through an online forum or Zoom meeting.


The average time commitment for a learner per week is: 1—2 hours


ECA Learning Hub subscribers are eligible for a lower registration rate: $176.50

Non-subscriber rate: $240

Enrolment information

Communities of Practice are small, facilitated learning communities and therefore, places within the course are limited.

Enrolments open: Monday 18 March 2019

Enrolments close: Wednesday 10 April 2019

Course run dates: Wednesday 10 April 2019 finishing on Friday 7th June 2019, with the first online collaborative session on Wednesday 17 April.

To enrol into Community of Practice: Technology in Early Childhood: tantalising, terrible, tenacious or terrific, please call Early Childhood Australia on 1800 356 900, or email learninghub@earlychildhood.org.au.

NESA Accreditation

Completing Community of Practice: Technology in Early Childhood: tantalising, terrible, tenacious or terrific will contribute 8 hours of NESA Registered PD addressing standards 2, 3, 4, and 6 from the Australian Professional Standards for Teachers towards maintaining Proficient Teacher Accreditation in NSW.