Technological Affordance, Social Practice and Learning Narratives in an Early Childhood Setting

  • Margaret Carr


This paper investigates the relationship between the affordance of the materials and the tools in one activity in an early childhood educational setting and the learning of the group of participating four-year-olds. The affordances are analysed as transparency, challenge and accessibility. The children's learning is analysed as emerging learning narratives that comprise intent, response to difficulty, and patterns of responsibility. Two major themes emerged from the investigation. The first is that historically- and socioculturally-determined social practice played a central role in the affordance of the activity. The second is that the relationship was a transactional process in which, through mediated action, the learners edited, selected from, and altered the educational setting, while at the same time the activity changed the learners. The research findings are set within the literature on affordance, learning narratives and social practice, with particular but not exclusive reference to early childhood settings.

early childhood motivational processes sociocultural perspectives technological affordance 


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Copyright information

© Kluwer Academic Publishers 2000

Authors and Affiliations

  • Margaret Carr
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of Early Childhood Studies, School of EducationThe University of WaikatoHamiltonNew Zealand

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