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Improving Tech Literacy in the Classroom

January 15, 2016

For Brenna Howard, literacy is a high priority – as an English teacher, she is tasked with helping her students become confident readers and writers. In order to reach this goal, her class at East Jessamine High School in Kentucky uses plenty of technology, from submitting assignments through the cloud to taking online quizzes. But Howard has found that her students are also learning another kind of literacy, one that extends beyond English class. Thanks to the way they use digital tools, Jessamine County students are becoming more tech-literate as well.

Technological literacy includes everything from conducting research to practicing online etiquette – crucial skills not only in school, but also after graduation. As Howard puts it, her students “need to know how to collaborate and use these basic tools that everyone is expected to use.” She and her fellow Jessamine teachers are pros at helping their students make the most of tech. A recent faculty survey showed that more students are being taught how to act respectfully online, and more teachers are using computers on a daily basis.  Additionally, they’ve seen a 22 percent jump in the number of elementary schoolers practicing their internet research skills. It’s clear from results like these that teachers in the Jessamine district are going above and beyond to prepare their students for success.

“I think that authentic technology use is essential to make these kids life-ready,” said district Technology Coordinator Erin Waggoner. And she’s right: the tech skills that Jessamine students build in the classroom, and the literacy they develop, will have a big impact as they move on to college and beyond.