Plan & play: Supporting intentional media use in early childhood

Alexis Hiniker, Bongshin Lee, Kiley Sobel, Eun Kyoung Choe

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contribution

33 Scopus citations


Parental controls allow parents to set limits on children's use of technology, but prior work suggests that controlling children alone is unlikely to foster the development of healthy media habits. We took elements from evidencebased preschool curricula that teach self-regulation and translated them to the digital space by creating a tool for preschoolers and parents to plan their device-based playtime. In an observational lab study with 11 parent-child dyads and follow-up interviews with 14 parents, we found that children demonstrated intentionality and made goaldirected choices as they planned, the mediating factor in developing self-regulation We observed that parents prompted their child to be intentional and solicited children's input. When children played through their plan, they transitioned to the next activity without intervention 93% of the time. Our results suggest that evidence-based practices for teaching self-regulation in a non-digital context can be applied productively to children's use of technology. As parents supported children in trying the tool for the first time, a further contribution of this work is a hierarchical model of parents' approaches to scaffolding children's use of a novel technology.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publicationIDC 2017 - Proceedings of the 2017 ACM Conference on Interaction Design and Children
PublisherAssociation for Computing Machinery, Inc
Number of pages11
ISBN (Electronic)9781450349215
StatePublished - Jun 27 2017
Event16th International ACM Conference on Interaction Design and Children, IDC 2017 - Stanford, United States
Duration: Jun 27 2017Jun 30 2017


Other16th International ACM Conference on Interaction Design and Children, IDC 2017
Country/TerritoryUnited States

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Software
  • Education
  • Human-Computer Interaction
  • Developmental and Educational Psychology


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