The benefits and challenges of digital learning for children and families

By John Beattie, Deputy Director (Families), Campaign for Learning

In today's increasingly digital world, technology is playing an ever more important role in our lives. From smartphones and tablets to laptops and smart TVs, digital devices are ubiquitous and offer us access to a wealth of information, entertainment, and educational resources. This is particularly true for children, who are growing up in a world that is far different from the one their parents and grandparents experienced. In this blog post, I'll explore the importance of digital learning for children and why it's becoming an essential part of their educational experience.

Information Access

Digital learning provides children with access to an enormous amount of information that can help them learn and explore the world around them. The internet is home to countless educational resources, from online courses and tutorials to interactive games and quizzes. By using digital tools and technology, children can access information on a range of topics, from science and mathematics to history and literature. This can help to broaden their horizons and provide them with new and exciting learning opportunities.

However, with so much information available it can be overwhelming for children to sort through and make sense of it all. It's important for families to set limits and establish boundaries to ensure that they are using technology in a safe and healthy way. This may include setting limits on screen time, ensuring that children are using age-appropriate content, and monitoring their online activity to protect them from potential risks.

Digital learning is engaging, interactive and flexible

One of the most significant advantages of digital learning is its flexibility. Children can learn at their own pace and on their own schedule, which can be particularly beneficial for those who have different learning styles or who need more time to grasp certain concepts. Digital learning tools can be personalized to suit the needs of each individual child, making the learning experience more engaging and effective.

Digital learning tools can be designed to be engaging and interactive, making the learning process more fun and enjoyable for children. Interactive games and quizzes, for example, can help to keep children motivated and interested in learning, while educational apps and software can provide them with a more immersive learning experience. This can be particularly beneficial for children who may struggle with traditional classroom materials or who find it difficult to stay focused on the task at hand.

One of the most important things adults can do to support children's digital learning is to choose high-quality resources that are appropriate for their age and skill level. There are many educational apps, websites, and online courses available, but not all of them are created equal! Check out Campaign for Learning’s free Digital Learning Resource Pack for resources and activity ideas! If looking for resources yourself, look for resources that are engaging, interactive, and have positive reviews from other users.

Adults can support children's digital learning by being positive role models themselves. This may include using digital tools and technology in a responsible and healthy way, demonstrating a love of learning and exploration, and encouraging children to use digital resources to pursue their interests and passions.

Digital learning can also be a collaborative and social experience. Encourage children to work together on projects, to share their ideas and insights with others, and to participate in online communities and forums related to their interests. This can help to foster their social skills, to develop their communication and teamwork skills, and to create a sense of belonging and community.

Preparation for the future

As technology continues to play an increasingly important role in our lives, digital skills are becoming essential for success in many different fields. By learning how to use digital tools and technology at a young age, children are better prepared for the future and have a greater chance of success in their chosen careers. Encourage children to explore different digital resources and to experiment with different tools and technologies. This can help to foster their creativity and curiosity, and to develop their problem-solving and critical thinking skills.

Digital learning is cost-effective

Digital learning tools are often more cost-effective than traditional classroom materials, which can make them more accessible to children from lower-income families. Online courses and tutorials, for example, can be accessed from anywhere with an internet connection, which means that children from rural or remote areas can still access high-quality educational resources.


Digital learning is a critical part of children’s educational experience. It provides them with access to a wealth of information, offers flexibility in learning, is engaging and interactive, helps to prepare them for the future, and is often more cost-effective than traditional classroom materials. As technology continues to advance, it's clear that digital learning will only become more important in the years to come, and it's essential that we continue to embrace its potential to help children learn and grow.