In our last article on the key issues in literacy-ICT integration, it was discussed how in the teaching profession you will always be challenged to integrate ICT in your classrooms. This continual challenge stems from the ever changing ways that we invite ICTs into our lives. It emphasises the need for continual learning for those in the teaching profession as it all points to new directions in teaching and the need for effective ‘capacity building’.
Experts such as Watts-Taffe and Gwinn (2007) emphasise that any professional development related to technology integration should focus on achieving this. Literacy-ICT integration should be no different then and follow the same principles as literacy educators continue to see the affects that technology has on their teaching and learning.
As the rate of technological development continues and expands, capacity building as a form of continual learning should then always form a part of your professional ‘lifelong learning’.
Learn more here:
- 12 ICT tools for the Literacy classroom today;
- How students learn with ICT;
- Information literacy skills for students;
- 10 Teaching Strategies that will capitalise on ICT in your classroom.
To get to the point….
Achieving literacy today will require “a wider range of skills, skill sophistication and the ability to apply these skills more quickly than ever” (Watts-Taffe & Gwinn, 2007, p. 19).
The new literacies are intrinsically linked to the new technologies and these are not only expansive, but also are emerging at such a rapid rate in society.
What are the new skills that you need to learn?
It is understandable that in the 21st century new technologies are creating new forms of literacy. You will have no doubt been a witness to someone searching on the Internet or done this yourself. If literacy teachers are to facilitate the learning of these new literacies then it is vital that if you are one of them, it is important that you are skilled in the new technologies yourself. Research (Kennewell, Parkinson, & Tanner, 2000) has indicated that the extent to which ICT is used effectively in literacy lessons depends to a large extent on your own level of ICT capability.
New technologies are becoming more central to every day literacy instruction. According to the New South Wales Department of Education (NSW Department of Education, 2019), a major challenge is how to increase staff capacity in ICT capability. In its final statement, it concluded that “teachers need to build capacity across a range of skills, techniques and strategies to be able to effectively assist their students to develop future skills for learning” (NSW Department of Education, 2019).
Answer yourself these questions:
- What strategies are available to navigate electronic texts and the internet? Where are the signposts and clues?
- Do we as teachers have the knowledge and skills to use search engines effectively to return manageable and relevant lists of data?
- How can we teach these skills to children? How can we interpret content, skills and progression in this information literacy?
(Rudd & Tyldesley, 2006, p. 7)
These are just some questions relating to the ability of children to find information.
With such a large amount of information available, children will also need to develop critical thinking and evaluating skills sufficiently.
Other skills include but are not limited to:
- The ability to re-present information in different ways for different audiences;
- The ability to use new media as a creative space;
- Personalise learning.
(Rudd & Tyldesley, 2006, p. 7-8)
Continual learning in literacy-ICT integration is essential and you will need to keep in mind that the characteristics of these new technologies will mean that the professional development you choose to take part in needs to have a focus on key strategies for learning about new technologies and how they might be used to enhance literacy learning for students.
Building your capacity to understand 21st century Literacy teaching
In the Australian Curriculum English learning Area, literacy and ICT capability coincide together in various curriculum contexts.
ICT capability plays an important part in this learning area as students use ICT to create print, visual and multimodal texts. “They use communication technologies when they conduct research online, and collaborate and communicate with others electronically. In particular, they use ICT to access, analyse, modify and create hybrid, digital and multimodal texts, using digital publishing” (Australian Curriculum, 2018).
We help you build your capacity in four ways:
First, we provide you with the expertise you need in order to effectively use these ICT tools in literacy lessons.
You will learn how to use specific literacy software that is readily available and which will develop student ICT capability. In addition, you will gain an understanding of how these ICT tools can be used to enhance literacy in your classroom.
This will help you in by:
- Enhancing literacy with ICT;
- Develop student ICT capability alongside literacy development;
- Meet the curriculum requirements.
Secondly, we provide you with practical and immediately actionable advice on how to establish a starting point for your students’ learning in both ICT capability and literacy.
You will learn how to effectively assess literacy when ICT is used and to assess student ICT capability by focusing on key formative assessment methods.
This will ensure you foster a culture of progression and continuity in your classroom.
Thirdly, you will acquire knowledge about evidence-based literacy-ICT teaching strategies to support your use of ICT in the classroom.
You will learn how to structure, support and scaffold literacy learning with ICT by gaining an understanding of how to deliver lessons, build on experience and how to use specific literacy-ICT instruction just to name a few.
Finally, we ensure that you have gained the most from your professional learning and provide you with a FREE literacy-ICT teaching resource aligned with the Australian Curriculum and your primary teaching level.
We encourage you to complete the professional development experience with us by undertaking a number of literacy-ICT activities in your classroom and to then come back and reflect on your experiences.
Your Professional Learning as a Pathway to Literacy-ICT Capacity Building
Accredited Teacher Professional Development for Literacy-ICT Integration
Online Course Objective
You will learn how to enhance literacy in your curriculum with ICT by implementing sound literacy-ICT teaching strategies boosted by teacher competence, clear goals and the development of purposeful and meaningful Literacy-ICT activities. In addition, you will gain the expertise you need in order to develop 21st century skills in your classroom practices as you collaborate and reflect on your learning experiences.