WHAT IS A DIGITAL WORLD?
We all live in a digital world. Not everyone lives the same way in this digital world but it surrounds them. It surrounds you and me by the mobile phones we carry, or the laptops we type away on, or even the toys our kids play with. Howell mentions in her book that we are all living in a highly interconnected world and that information and communication surrounding us no longer has any boundaries (Howell, 2012).
So as a teaching student why is this so important to me? Or why as aspiring teachers do we need to care about technology in our classrooms? Over the past decade or so technology and digital devices have crept into the classroom, for me this occurred only once a week in the computer labs but nowadays this is very different. These days there are expectations, as discussed in Howell’s book these aren’t only expectations from the kids but also parents and more so employers of the wider community. They expect the education system to produce “technologically fluent students” who can walk straight into a work force and stay up to date with emerging technologies (Howell, 2012, p6).
Teachers, whether they be old, new or aspiring need to develop or up skill their digital process of teaching, also known as digital pedagogy (Howell, 2012). Research suggests that technology makes learning more engaging and fun for kids. Teachers that don’t incorporate these changes into their lessons could find that kids just aren’t learning or retaining important information. An article written by Prensky (2008) really highlights an importance on including the students and trying to find out what engages them in the classroom. He continues to talk about how teachers and students think differently and he quotes a young man from Florida who says, “You think of technology as a tool. We think of it as a foundation, it’s the basis of everything we do” (Prensky, 2008,p2).
We live in a digital world, some people may not like that but it is best to jump on board and enjoy the ride. The world around us is evolving and as teachers we need to be able to best equip the future leaders of today.
Howell, J. (2012). Teaching with ICT : digital pedagogies for collaboration & creativity. South Melbourne, Victoria, Australia Oxford University Press
Prensky, M. (2008). The 21st-Century Digital Learner. Edutopia. Retrieved 28 April 2016, from http://www.edutopia.org/ikid-digital-learner-technology-2008
(2016). Encrypted-tbn2.gstatic.com. Retrieved 28 April 2016, from https://encrypted-tbn2.gstatic.com/images?q=tbn:ANd9GcSO9NqO6B95mrJrg2e3ZN9V-l4cpsOBHwTSWeYR8B6NeZk8A2i2