BLOG #1 Please consider the following ideas as you blog this week. We know technology/digital literacy has to be taught (we can’t rely on the theory of the digital native) yet, given your already full curriculum, how will you begin to teach digital literacy?
Given that I have a full curriculum, and given that nowhere in my curriculum is there a lesson that teaches digital literacy, I have decided that the only way to teach my second graders digital literacy is by doing digital lessons that I personally create. The digital lessons that I teach are connected with my grade level content, and serve as an extension to my curriculum.
I have begun teaching digital literacy to second graders via a Web 2.0 tool called Animoto.
Since the students are so young, I have taught them basic digital skills, such as how to capitalize letters, create the @ symbol, log in, log out, create work, edit work, save work, and so much more. Basic digital skills are necessary for digital literacy. In addition, there is constant troubleshooting that arises that I have to figure out how to overcome, which becomes a learning opportunity for the students.
The same way I teach digital literacy to my second graders is similar to how I would teach a high schooler.
To introduce digital storytelling, I model to the students how to create an Animoto digital story using a laptop and overhead projector so they can see me start the whole process from start to finish (open google, type animoto, go to animoto's website, create account, log in, create story, e.t.c).
After modeling, I let all the students attempt to log in and start creating. I always have students explore Animoto's site first without restrictions or instructions. Playing with the website builds familiarity and background knowledge as well as increases their digital skills needed to be digitally literate. It also serves as a sample for their digital palate. Once they've had a taste, they want more.
Once students begin working on their projects, there is a constant cycle of students creating stories, receiving feedback from me, and revising and enhancing their projects until I finally decide they have achieved the objective.
Based off of John Hattie's best teaching strategies and my own reflection on how to increase student achievement, I've found giving immediate whole group and one on one feedback is the key to their success. I use whole group feedback to showcase mistakes that many students are making or advice I want to give to many students. I float around the computer lab giving advice on how to improve their projects, teaching them digital skills necessary to perform the tasks, and troubleshooting glitches that arise.
I look forward to learning more digital tools that I can teach my students such as MovieMaker and WeMovie that will take their digital stories to the next level. My idea of teaching digital literacy is through the exploration of sites that stimulates, challenges, and provides student choices. It is also important to utilize web programs that are accessibly free for students and educators such as Animoto, Powtoon (I'm still learning it).