Schools everywhere in the United States have been faced with incorporating technology in the classroom, even before twelve year-olds had smartphones. Digital literacy, however, is of incredible concern for school officials and education authorities today. With 21st-century technology, integration and use are the principal objectives for critical pedagogies at all levels: elementary to higher.
The concerns are reflected in national “Common Core Standards” initiatives on digital literacy. School curriculums have already been revised in a plethora of schools. Obviously, many issues come to the forefront of debates and discussions about this new form of literacy. Technology’s prevalence an widespread popularity in this country have caused revamped approaches to education altogether. So, the primary issue is transformed into a multitude, whereby everything about education paradigms is forced to start changing.
According to a recent article which highlighted several professional perspectives and insights, the conventional classroom superstructure is fading away. The ways of students sitting in rows, taking part in a banking system of education and passively listening and absorbing information are long gone. Surely, professionals cannot expect such an antiquated mode of instruction to work anymore. They are aware of the shift, and what it is doing.
The concern of educators everywhere is how to integrate technology and develop digital literacy with the most efficacies. Students still need to be taught critical thinking skills, interpretation, analysis and synthesis when it comes to information. They need to know how to apply what they learn to a myriad of situations. And, last but not least, learning how to work cooperatively and collaborating in discussion and analysis of an idea is essential. That teaches students how to suspend their judgments, how to tolerate ambiguity and opposing ideas, as well as how to reflect and communicate effectively.
As such, technology can come into play as a tool for research, analysis and connection between students. But integrating technology and developing digital literacy create new modalities for learning. The infinite space of the Internet alone can be used to break down the classroom walls geographically and temporally. But how is all this done? There has to be plenty of measures of practicality.
Schools everywhere have already tried to add computer labs, construct a world language lab and extend network capabilities. But those that have not are at least trying to secure teachers with certain expertise. These “digital natives” are invaluable in revamping the education paradigm. And, ultimately, that is what technology has forced educators to do. They need firm systematic approaches when it comes to integrating technology in schools and developing digital literacy in students.