What is Digital Literacy?
Digital Literacy is commonly known as an individual’s ability to find valuable content, evaluate it thoroughly, and communicate it virtually or digitally with other people. It can also be defined as knowledge and awareness about the digital world. In the 21st century, the importance, value, and need of digital literacy can not be sidelined, especially for teachers. The world of education is now running online, students are more comfortable in continuing their studies online. In order to fulfill the educational needs of the students, teachers need to keep themselves updated with the latest technology and teaching trends. Let us understand digital literacy with the help of a few examples.
1- Having knowledge of how to send emails, create PPTs, use PowerPoint or photoshop, etc. are a few examples of digital literacy.
2- Making use of gadgets like computers, pen tab, mobile phones, or teaching platforms like Teachmint, etc. can also be known as digital literacy.
Why is Digital Literacy important for teachers?
The importance of digital literacy can never be underestimated, especially in the life of teachers. Having knowledge of the digital world can make a teacher’s life super convenient and advantageous. Read this conversation between two teachers here to know more about the importance of digital literacy. (Teacher 1- Ritu, Teacher 2- Supriya)
Ritu Ma’am- Supriya Ma’am, my students are asking me to take online remedial classes in order to understand a few topics again. How do I explain the concept better? I am very confused about how to conduct an online class?
Supriya Ma’am- Oh don’t worry, I take online classes very often. My students love attending online classes and I have observed a marked improvement in their grades as well. All I do is schedule my class on Teachmint and prepare well for my lectures.
Ritu Ma’am- But how do you schedule classes on Teachmint and how do you make your students’ online learning better?
Supriya Ma’am- It’s extremely simple, I just open the app and follow the instructions required to schedule a class. If something comes up that I don’t understand, I simply watch related videos available on Youtube. And to make my classes more interesting I make sure to use graphic learning using PPTs, movies, etc.
Ritu Ma’am- I see, in order to be a good online teacher or teach effectively, I will have to stay updated with the latest technology. I will also need to learn to make PPTs, etc.
The above conversation is a clear example of how digital-friendly teachers feel more confident about their teaching. We can conclude the importance of digital literacy for teachers with the help of these five points-
To stay updated with time
To make their classes interactive or engaging
To be able to understand and communicate better with students
To make students’ learning easier
To use new methods, strategies, and styles of teaching
Best 3 Tips to gain Digital Literacy
Explore different platforms- When a child starts learning the concepts of Mathematics, the first advice they get from their teachers or elders is to practice as much as possible. The same rule applies to the teachers as well, if the teacher wants themselves to be digitally literate, they will have to explore as much as possible. For, the try and error method works the best always.
Watch youtube videos- From the explanation of a Shakespearean poem to a complete guide on using different types of gadgets or platforms, there’s hardly anything that youtube does not know. Youtube has the answer to every question that a teacher might have while exploring the digital world.
Take help from students- When children have no idea how to hold a spoon or a pencil, parents are the ones to teach them that. On the other hand, when parents have no idea how to use social media or mobile phones in general, children extend a helping hand in such situations. Similarly, if teachers ever get stuck while using digital platforms or gadgets, they should directly reach out to their students and ask for help. Since the kids of the 21st century are extremely tech-savvy, and they are the best people to reach out to.
“The illiterate of the 21st century will not be those who cannot read and write, but those who cannot learn, unlearn and relearn.” – Alvin Toffler
This quote says it all, there is no age to learn anything new. Teachers should surely try their best to keep updating themselves with time. We hope this blog would help you in some way, to read other such blogs, explore this space more.