Digital education: a two-way training

In May I attended the presentation of the guide for families “How to involve yourself in the digital education of your children” (cat). A guide focused on parents so as to orient them in the education of a digital environment in which we are now immersed. This one, like other guides, forms part of a series of resources focused on parents and teachers which are being generated around the news ways of communication and the current technological learning.

educacio digital

Guide for families “How to involve yourself in the digital education of your children

Education in the use of digital devices is one of the nine pillars of what in the Anglo Saxon world is called Digital Citizenship, from the point of view of the rights and duties of the citizens that have arisen within the field of new technologies. It is a complex issue which has been discussed about for some years now, under various names and in different countries, but with a common horizon: to accompany children in the use of the new technologies of information and communication.

According to UNESCO digital education or literacy is the combination of skills, knowledge and aptitudes that a person needs to be able to develop functionally in the technological society. And this digital education, focused especially on the children or youths being trained, involves agents and concepts that go beyond the purely family environment.

We consider here three important learning settings, the influence of each varying according to the culture, but in one moment or another all play determining roles:

  •  at home: (lack of) parental knowledge, influence of brothers and sisters and family, etc.
  •  at school: training of the teaching and administrative staff, digital books, books with online complementary material, resource platforms, online course managers, etc.
  • in cultural institutions: the influence in training received from the application of new technologies in libraries, civic centres, museums, etc.

It is important to train the youths from these settings in the rights and duties that they have with regard to the digital world, so as to provide them with the tools that allow them to develop freely in a technological world that is changing rapidly. Recently we have seen, for example, the appearance ofwearables such as the Google Glass or the smartwatches which are making communication trends evolve. The technological companies are alert to the consumption of these devices by youths and teenagers, so as to maintain their market niche until adult age.

Likewise it is important to get informed and trained so as to be able to provide resources in a coherent way for the new generations who, on the one hand, have a lot of knowledge about the use of the technological tools, but, on the other hand, are often unaware of their global scope.

Cristina Martín

Links of interest

Parent Teacher Association

Top Ten Ways Parents Can Teach Digital Citizenship

Common sense on media

Center for digital education

ICT Unesco

20 ways of thinking about digital literacy in higher education

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