Last class, I presented my digital literacy mini-lesson to my fellow Ed-Tech 400 classmates. I chose to focus on digital collaboration as well as a grade 7 English outcome:
CR7.5 Listen critically to understand and analyze oral information and ideas from a wide range of texts (e.g., complex instructions, oral explanations and reports, opinions or viewpoints, messages presented in the media).
I, specifically, narrowed in on this indicator from the outcome:
Identify the perspective implicit within an oral presentation and what information, arguments, or positions are not included.
After listening to “The True Story of The 3 Little Pigs!” by Jon Scieszka,
I had my classmates explore and use some digital collaboration tools (MindMeister and Kialo) to brainstorm ideas. Next, they debated against each other either in favour of the wolf or against him.
I was impressed by the participation I received from my peers and the ideas they brought to the lesson. Through some discussion, we were able to make connections to fake news, media sensationalism, and even race issues in North America. Some of these connections might have been harder to make with grade 7 students but I do believe it would be possible, and these are very important connections to be made.
If I were to do this lesson again, I would focus greater on the aspect of digital collaboration. To do this, I would dedicate a full prior lesson to teaching the students how to use digital collaboration tools and discussing why these platforms are beneficial. Moreover, I would explain how these online tools can be used safely outside of school.
The biggest challenges I faced in the lesson were time and communication. I overestimated what could be accomplished in 30 minutes with my classmates which means I would have even accomplished less with actual grade 7 students. However, this was a great thing for me to learn as I was able to adapt my lesson accordingly and can now shorten my lesson if I were to do it again in the future. Another challenge was communication. I was unaware that I would not be able to send messages to the students when they were in their breakout rooms. For this reason, if I were to do this lesson again, I would create a google doc with the information the students would need access to while they were in their group discussions.
Upon reflecting on my lesson, I think I could have focused more on the digital literacy aspect and less on the English outcome while still “hitting” both. Since presenting my lesson, I have come across many ideas for digital literacy lessons on Twitter, Pinterest, and a variety of other sites. However, through planning my mini-lesson, I discovered many great digital tools that are available for students and teachers. I will be creating a digital literacy lesson again and I am glad to have my first one under my belt! A special thanks to my EDTC 400 classmates for being my guinea pigs!