Before researching this topic, if I were asked “what is ‘digital fluency’?” I likely would have answered (totally unaware of the actual meaning) that it reflects ones ability to use digital technologies. Being somewhat on the right track, my view of digital fluency was very condensed and researching has broadened my understanding significantly.
An individual’s digital fluency represents not their abilities using digital technologies, but the amount of confidence they show in attempting to use them (Howell, 2012). As we enter a digitally profound age “educationalists are seeing a need to up-skill students in digital technologies during their schooling” (Howell, 2012, p.13). As many educators realize that technology will continue to move forward (Inspired Magazine, 2013) and that their students were born in a digital age, they are rethinking the education system to build digital fluency and promote lifelong learning inside classrooms.
I personally recognize myself as digitally fluent on a comfortable level: if I am instructed to navigate myself around/inside a digital technology I have never used before I will give it a try, but can find myself in need of assistance. I am confident using the digital technologies I am familiar with, but also interested in learning more. As a result of using digital technologies daily I am motivated to explore them more, and excited to involve the use of digital technologies in my future early childhood classrooms.
As digital technologies are engaging and motivating in the classroom (Edutopia, 2015), I believe they have great ability to aid learning inside and outside the educational setting.
“As classrooms are increasingly technology-rich learning environments, and students are engaging in digital technologies outside schooling, it would be fooling to ignore their appeal” (Howell, 2012, p.13).
Edutopia, (2015). If Technology Motivates Students, Let’s Use It! http://www.edutopia.org/blog/motivating-students-technology
Flourishlearning.org, (2015). http://www.flourishlearning.org/wp-content/uploads/2014/05/cropped-cropped-shutterstock_153752699.gif
Howell, J. (2012). Teaching with ICT. Melbourne: Oxford University Press.
Inspired Magazine, (2013). Technology’s impact on society in today’s generations, http://inspiredm.com/technologys-impact-on-society-in-todays-generations/