The Irish Neighbourhood Play Research Project included almost 1700 families and 240 communities throughout Ireland. Using parental surveys and naturalistic observation, data was secured on how children in modern Ireland aged 0-14 are spending their free time. An all-island approach was taken incorporating cities, towns and rural areas across a variety of socio-economic groupings. Interesting findings arose from the data relating to the choices that children are making within their free time. This paper focuses on the choices they are making within technology use. Data on the children’s technological engagement will be presented and discussed through a child development lens. The positive and negative implications for both learning and development are raised. This generation of children will be the first to emerge into adulthood without ever experiencing a world without technology. For them, it will always have been central to their existence. What does this mean for the next generation of humanity?

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The Irish Neighbourhood Play Project, technology in children’s play, children’s technology choices, implications of technology use in childhood, children and television, play, childhood, education.

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