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Digital Literacy

Digital Literacy: Computers & Technology

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A major goal of educators is to prepare children to enter the world of work ready to thrive. This means we must prepare students for the unknown world of tomorrow, rather than the world of today. One of our greatest challenges is to provide a solid core of fundamental learning while simultaneously adapting offerings so our students benefit from learning experiences that will lead into a knowledge base fit for the 21st century.

Using technology as a tool for communicating and learning is critical for our students. Technology speeds up the rate of learning by decreasing wait time and by increasing ownership of the learning. When I was a child, getting information meant a trip to the library, using the card catalogue, finding the right area in the library, and then selecting books by using the table of contents and the index. Now, Google searches are so natural to our students that "google&" is used as a verb. Recently, I was in a seventh grade science class where teams of students were researching diseases and I overheard one student say to her partner, "We better google that again, I don't think this can be true.&" I left the science lab with a feeling of amazement and pride at the high level of critical thinking this teacher and her technological resources created for her students.

For educators, the catch here is that our core responsibility is to teach critical thinking in a changing context. No matter the era in which we are/were educated, we need to evaluate and use information in order to add value to our world. When critical thinking is not a major goal of a lesson, our technological tools become nothing more than glitzy ornamentation in our classrooms.

In addition to using a variety of technological tools to enhance learning, Pershing offers an elective course called "Digital Literacy&". This course, which is taught by Mrs. Ryan, is aimed directly at enhancing student use of the new literacy - image, connectivity, and words that evoke - in a responsible way for critical thinking. Other goals include web safety, ethics, and modifying messages for a variety of venues.

Lessons and projects are designed to follow NETS and CTE standards.

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