In my own views digital literacy has two main ideas- both of which are fantastic. In this highly technological world children are increasingly becoming to see technology as the norm- many children today (including myself at the ripe old age of 23 😉 ) have never been in a world that didn’t know computers and technology.
Thus it is now more important than ever that we incorporate the world of IT into our teaching and learning. Here are the main two uses of digital literacy as I see it.
1. Reading and creating texts through the medium of ICT.
Of course it is important to instil a love for books- there is nothing like the smell of a page in a freshly printed book. And for a die hard literature nerd like myself I will always prefer to snuggle up in a blanket under a tree, in a park, in bed, wherever I may be completely involved in a book cover to cover. Literally. However an online story with interactions, sounds and graphics can instantly capture a child. More importantly it can allow you to reach those children who were never bothered by story time before.
Even more importantly is the capability that ICT gives in creating texts. Animations, photo stories, comic book creators, blogs- all great resources that can give an extra edge to writing to really inspire those children to…well I was going to say pen to paper but I suppose that isn’t really the right an analogy here!
2. Using videos and images
Using photos and video clips can really allow children to visualise what they want to say. How can you compose a perfect sentence with beautiful imagery if you can’t quite conjure up an image as such in your head. I’ve seen the fantastic sentences children have written after describing a beautiful photo of nature- implementing vocabulary that they had never had the opportunity to have learnt before.
There are many other methods of digital literacy but as I said these are the main two in my view and can really give you a clear idea of what digital literacy is and how it can really improve the writing in your classroom.