Digital Child Seminar Series
In 2021, we successfully launched the Centre’s first Digital Child Seminar Series. Led by Professor Annette Woods, Professor Michael Dezuanni and Professor Lisa Kervin, Engaging (socio)materially: Critical literacy, children and media comprised five seminars featuring international experts discussing research related to sociomaterial theories, methodologies and practices. The online series attracted more than 400 attendees from around the world, positioning the Centre on the map in innovative thinking on sociomaterial approaches to research on children and digital technology. The series also allowed the Centre to build important connections with international experts in the field.
“Poetic, moving, innovative, unique.”
Attendee feedback on the Digital Child Seminar Series
In October, the Centre celebrated Children’s Week 2021 with two events: an online partner panel discussion that attracted more than 150 registrations, and a Digital Play Afternoon in QUT’s Children’s Technology Centre for Centre members and their young children.
Digital Play Afternoon
On 26 October, Digital Child members and their children were invited to play, learn, and connect in the QUT Children’s Technology Centre (CTC). Children and their adults engaged in interactive digital and maker activities such as Duplo and LEGO, digital photography, BeeBot Art, and coding with LEGO WeDo robots. The Digital Play Afternoon (photos above) was the first event to be held in the CTC after the pandemic restricted activity for most of the year. In addition to connecting with members and their families, it was an opportunity to ‘soft launch’ the CTC and test the space and activities for future events.
Partner panel event
The Digital Child: Making friends and connections in a post-pandemic world was chaired by Advisory Committee Chair Taryn Marks and featured presentations from Samantha Yorke (Government Affairs and Public Policy, Google Australia), Kate Highfield (General Manager, Professional Learning and Research Translation, Early Childhood Australia) and Megan O’Sullivan (Statewide Operations Manager, Scitech).
The Children’s Week theme in 2021 focussed on Article 15 of the United Nations Convention on the Rights of a Child – that children have the right to choose their own friends and safely connect with others. The panellists discussed how the pandemic and digital technology have given rise to children’s right to make their own friendships, and the implications and opportunities. More than 150 people from around the world registered to attend the event and participate in the discussion on digital children’s rights, and helped place the Centre on the world map in digital child research.