"Today's students are digital natives, so technology must be ubiquitous in our schools." --Board of Education, Pike County
We live in a society where we need to stop thinking of technology as the next newest greatest gadget, but instead, as a mindset in which we nurture our students’ ability and confidence, both online and offline, in the digital world. Students are using digital technologies and media at increasingly younger ages and for longer periods of time. They spend an average of seven hours a day in front of screens – from televisions and computers, to mobile phones and various digital devices. Moreover, there is the digital age gap. Student technology use is very different from adults. This gap makes it difficult for parents and educators to fully understand how technology has evolved and will evolve to prepare students for future endeavors. Our job as educators is to develop students’ Digital Intelligence Quotient or “DQ.” DQ is the set of social, emotional and cognitive abilities that enable individuals to face the challenges and adapt to the demands of digital life. Instead of investing in the newest greatest technology in our schools, we will integrate technologies to develop Digital Intelligence, which will allow students to successfully engage a wide range of technologies to solve problems. We call this Digital Literacy.
Integrating technology in the classroom is important because it should be used to leverage 21st century skills (critical thinking, creativity, collaboration, and communication) to solve real-world problems. Technology is not just a substitute for paper and pencil or textbooks; it is a tool that excites and engages students to create deeper understanding of disciplinary content and facilitates transfer of 21st century skills in an environment that acknowledges the new economy belongs to creators - to innovators. We aim for every student in the Pike County School System to be a Creative Problem Solver. The development of Digital Literacy is indeed mission critical.
We divide Digital Literacy into three areas:
Digital Citizenship - The ability to use digital technology and media in safe, responsible and effective ways;
Digital Creativity - The ability to become a part of the digital ecosystem by co-creating new content and turning ideas into reality by using digital tools;
Digital Entrepreneurship - The ability to use digital media and technologies to solve global challenges or to create new opportunities.