Digital Learning Day 2018
On Thursday, February 22nd, tens of thousands of educators and students across the country demonstrated how technology can improve student learning as part of the seventh annual national Digital Learning Day! Initiated in 2012, Digital Learning Day was designed to encourage educators to be intentional about providing high-quality instruction where technology enhances and strengthens the learning experience for students.
For those of us who are committed to equity and the powerfulness of using technology to improve instruction, it validates what we’ve been saying all along – it’s not about the tech. The technology is just a tool that can allow teachers to transcend the traditional learning experience in ways never before imagined.
In my district, we place a huge emphasis on the 4Cs (Collaboration, Communication, Critical Thinking, and Creativity), but with the demands of standardized testing, it’s so hard for teachers who are new to using technology in the classroom to see the benefit. If classroom integration is new, it is often difficult to see why allowing students to be creators instead of just consumers is so important. Being in a 1:1 iPad classroom for 2 years before I began my current role allowed me to see how allowing students to engage in 4C’s activities increase their ability to problem solve and grow as thinkers.
Because of this, we use the opportunity of Digital Learning Day to showcase the work that is going on. For the past three years, we’ve launched a two-week challenge that encourages teachers to share the work they (and their students) are doing to extend and enhance learning. Using a Google Site (isn’t it the easiest way to build something that looks so polished?), we created a space where we could put the challenges, look at suggestions, and submit their entries. If you’re interested in checking out the site, click here.
As an incentive to participate, those that submit an entry are in the running for some very cool prizes! We also awarded double entry points to those who submitted on the actual day (February 22nd)! After Thursday, I was so excited to see over 50 entries of amazing things that students and teachers did!
We have one more week left and I’m excited about what we will continue to see. If you’ve never participated in Digital Learning Day, I encourage you to do so next year. If you did participate this year, I’d love for you to tell me about your experience!
ITC at Darlington County School District
Apple Distinguished Educator
Google Certified Trainer/Innovator
South Carolina, USA