If we are living in the 21st century, then we should teach like it. Well, easier said than done. Whenever anyone is asked to shift, to improve, to grow, change introduces itself and not everyone likes to embrace change. Some of us are shy, some of us may think we already have it going on, and some might be to busy to notice change just standing there in front of them.
It’s easier to drag students through a novel the traditional way than it is to shake up their learning with digital apps and interactive technologies like Kahoot.it. We already have materials from past years, lessons which worked okay but if we were really honest lacked sparkle, and we might not have the time to, as many of my colleagues say, “re-create the wheel.” Or, we just might not be aware of the “best” way to make sure students are gaining literacy skills in the 21st century.
Consider the following statistics:
- 94% of teens ages 16-17 listen to music, talk radio, or podcasts every day or almost every day .
- 45% of 17 year olds read for pleasure once or twice a year .
- 91% of teens ages 16-17 have a cell phone or Smartphone and 91% use social media .
- Teens ages 13-17 are active on Facebook, Instagram, Snapchat, Twitter, Vine, Pinterest, and Reddit where they post and interact with others daily.
- 71% of teens ages 13-17 are active on more than one social media site.
- Girls are more likely to engage with visually-oriented social media while boys are more likely to engage in online gaming .
If I am a teacher, I’m wondering how I can harness the power of social media and multimedia texts to build literacy skills. Meet them where they are. To twist a quote from “Field of Dreams,” they are building it…we must come to them. [Read more…]