As i have learnt this week life long learning is about educators providing their students with knowledge and skills that allow them to effectively function in society as their life progresses. We live in a digital world and there is no escaping that. It is the educators job to ensure that students are being taught about technologies and how to use them in order to obtain these life long skills. The following youtube video further discusses life long learning.
Admittedly when thinking about what technologies we use frequently in our personal life, the first thing I thought about was Facebook and Instagram. The first thing I do when I wake up is go on Facebook and Instagram, the last thing I do each day is go on Facebook and Instagram, my lunch breaks, really every spare minute I have im using Facebook and Instagram. Then I began to think of the benefits besides seeing who’s seeing who and doing what. As a scrolled through I noticed the many many educational pages I have liked and follow. Every day I see and read news from the National Quality Standard or childcare news as well as other educators sharing information and ideas and I realised I in fact have used or further discussed many things I have seen while indulging myself in these addictive social media sites. So I guess I transfer what I see and read and use them each day within my workplace.
Facebook and Instagram are just two of the many digital resources that allow me to transfer knowledge of skills to the classroom. As looked into throughout this week, Jane McGonigal an online game designer strongly believes that the skills ‘gamers’ obtain from using such digital resources can use their skills to solve real life problems such as climate change and poverty. Following is a video clip that further dives into this valid and interesting ideas.
With thousands of things available to use through digital technologies, it can be hard to keep up and be confident in using them correctly. As educators we need to be on top of this in order to expect our children to have a certain level of digital fluency. Using a variety of resources and programs in the classroom will allow our children to become fluent in many ways. This week we looked at word processing, spread sheets, web searching, animation, movie making, podcasts, blogging and web design and how they could be used in lessons.
Also this week I was introduced to cartoon making! Logging onto Scratch.mit.edu was a tad exiting and then that soon followed with confusion and annoyance, all while thinking wow the children would love this!! Having never even heard of this let alone having a go at making my own cartoon, it was the work of our lecturer that presented me with this resources. The world we live in is fast becoming taken over by digital technology, which means the children of today will be expected to be the most digitally fluent. In saying this, it is our job as educators to ensure that we are also digitally fluent to provide the best opportunities for our children.
I find myself asking, what would I do without the internet? How would I know anything? I always come to the conclusion that I wouldn’t have as much knowledge as I have now and it would me much harder to obtain then hopping on good old google and simply typing in anything I want to know, it seems there are endless sources available to provide me with that information. This weeks topic then made me ask, how reliable are the sources I am viewing? The more I thought about it, if I have a simple question, I type it into google and I believe the first thing I read, how would I even know if what I read was correct?
Although the internet is vital in providing us with information it may not be as reliable as we think or hope. Its sites such as Pandora, an Australian web archive that we can rely on to provide us with reliable sources. Pandora and its partners aim to archive sites that are reliable rather than just any Australian website. The site provides users with the ability to search according to subject and also provides users with other reliable archive sites. Pandora is yet another amazing resource we are lucky enough to have access to thankyou to this digital society we live in.
If you haven’t yet explored the gift of Pandora (and I don’t mean the jewellery) here is the website;
Further exploring the digital divide opened up an array of avenues I could take to discuss in this weeks blog post. So I have decided to further look at;
- The impact of non-participation in the digital world
- Ways in which the gap can be lessened
I have access to wifi, laptops, ipads, iphones, computer programs and the list goes on and on. Having these resources to use at my disposal allows me to send emails, digitally create and store documents, access the latest information and resources, online shop and bank, and this list literally is never ending. In a way there is not much I cant do, however not everyone is as fortunate as you or I, some don’t have access to any of this and having this digital divide has a huge impact.
One reason for a digital divide is household incomes and people simply not being able to afford technologies. Income also has an impact on the reasons developing countries around the world do not have access to many technologies.
What does this mean for these people?
- Limited communication
- Limited access to resources and information
- Limited ability to digitally store data and documents
- Limited opportunities within the wider community
- Limited skills within using technology
With these issues having an impact on a digital divide, how can this divide be lessened?
A concept of one laptop per child is one way in which the need to lessen the digital divide is being addressed, following is a link to a clip where the creator, Nicholas Negroponte talks of this project.
The Bill Gates foundation is also working towards bridging this divide through the global library strategy, following is a link to the Bill Gates foundation site where the strategy is explained.
Things to think about in todays digital savvy world.
- Identity theft.
Identity theft is a type of fraud and illegal act which involves someone other than yourself stealing or making financial gain by using your identity and personal details. This could be anything from purchasing items using your credit card to steeling your entire identity and taking loans out in your name. This can happen to anyone, as seen in the following article.
Scammers are those individuals or groups that intentionally aim to gain financial benefit through fraud and identity theft. The following link is to an article listing the top 3 Australian financial scams of 2013.
3. Cyber bullying.
Cyberbullying is bullying and harassing another through the use of technologies such as mobile phones, facebook, etc. As educators, cyberbullying is something that may be seen often and it is the educator’s responsibility to protect students and educate them on the effects of cyberbullying. Here is a link that further explains cyberbullying and ways to prevent it. The second link is an article regarding cyberbullying in Australia.
” Its time to think”.
- How careful are you with your dealings online?
- How can you be more digitally secure?
- Are our kids digitally secure?