Monday, January 22, 2018

Get Ready for Digital Learning Day!

Digital Learning Day 2018 will be on February 22! Digital Learning Day is an annual event that began in 2012, and the purpose is to "highlight great teaching practice and showcase innovative teachers, leaders, and instructional technology programs that are improving student outcomes" using technology. But as all great teachers who use technology know, our work is never about any particular tech tool; it's about LEARNING!

The International Society for Technology in Education (ISTE) has created Standards for Students that are designed to help students thrive in a constantly-changing world. These standards provide a wonderful starting point for understanding how technology can impact learning. As you consider how you and your students might become involved in Digital Learning Day, start with these standards, think about how they apply to your curricular goals, and focus on how technology impacts your learners. In other words, don't use technology just for technology's sake.

Are your students Empowered Learners who "leverage technology to take an active role in choosing, achieving and demonstrating competency in their learning goals"? Are you helping your students to be outstanding Digital Citizens who "recognize the rights, responsibilities and opportunities of living, learning and working in an interconnected digital world"? When you think of a Knowledge Constructor as a student who "critically curates a variety of resources using digital tools to construct knowledge, produce creative artifacts and make meaningful learning experiences for themselves and others" - what students come to mind? Celebrate these students - as well as those Innovative Designers, Computational Thinkers, Creative Communicators, and Global Collaborators - not just on Digital Learning Day, but every day!

If your classroom or school would like to participate in Digital Learning Day, just head on over to their website to see the list of resources. You can see examples of what other schools are doing and add your school's name to the #DLDay Map. Be sure to follow Digital Learning Day on Twitter and Facebook.

Regardless of whether you choose to officially participate in the 2018 Digital Learning Day, be sure that you are integrating technology seamlessly, always starting with your learners and learning goals and then selecting the best tool to help you meet those goals. Sometimes that tool will be a pencil or a calculator; other times it will be a creating a greenscreen presentation or participating in a videoconference with a scientist. If you're not sure how best to accomplish a digital learning goal, your Instructional Technology team would love to help you! Please reach out to Clara, Fern, Leah, or Nancy - we love to assist you in implementing just the right tool.

And let us know if you decide to put your name on that Digital Learning Day map!

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