Digital Literacy – A Lockdown Silver Lining
Author: Jayne Mills.
1st February 2021.
Each day on the news we hear about how lockdown has had a detrimental effect on children's education; the concern being their academic progress. However, I feel that we are somewhat missing a point in regard to the other learning that is taking place. Covid-19 has forced a rapid acceleration in the rate of change around how people learn and the shift from traditional learning methods to a blended learning approach.
Long before lockdown was even heard of, Mayville had already implemented blended learning, through the use of Google Classroom and all that it has to offer. The first lockdown, although daunting, gave us a great foundation to enable switching to remote learning – practically seamless in its application – and teaching undertook a significant transformation within a very short time.
This also led us to rethink the traditional learning that takes place and how technology can support the teaching and learning process. Teachers, pupils and parents alike have had a huge learning experience of new technology: Google Meet, Screencastify, Loom, Mote, Nearpod are but a few of the applications that have catapulted our IT skills into expertise, sculpting lessons into a different, more twenty-first century format. Remote learning has shown that pupils have accepted and adapted to the changes in their learning and their ways of working and they have stepped up to the challenge in a positive way.
Creativity has led to pupils implementing and communicating new ways of submitting work, showing that they have demonstrated originality and inventiveness in their work, often collaborating in teams remotely. Likewise, the innovative learning methods that teachers have delivered have used integrated technologies. Digital literacy is one of the soft skills needed by twenty-first century workers and, by adapting to the new way of working, teachers at Mayville have enhanced our pupils’ digital skills.
Although lockdown is not an ideal situation by any means, we need to identify the unique opportunities that this has allowed our pupils to experience and the skills they will have mastered in readiness for the future."
Senior School teacher
All of us have had to embrace technology, to adapt and change. Although we cannot anticipate the future of technology and what will be used in business, we can and are preparing our pupils with the ‘soft skills’ that will equip them for life beyond school.
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