Digital Literacy: A Crucial Skill To Include In The Curriculum

Digital Literacy

The internet has moved ahead leaps and bounds and has become an essential part of our everyday lives. As such, learning to use it has become an important skill that is essential for every student to have knowledge of. 

Schools in Dubai are always up to date with the present norms and conditions of society.

Hence the use of the internet is prevalent in their curriculum. 

However, attracting such a wide population of all age groups from 8 – 80, there are certain disadvantages of the internet. Along with a treasure trove of knowledge, there are a lot of undesirable elements within the internet too. So it is important for people, especially students, to be aware of these threats and not fall prey.  

As a result, Digital Literacy has become a topic of prime importance within the curriculum at schools in Dubai. In order to keep their students safe and aware, schools in Dubai teach every child the aspects of Digital literacy.

Digital Literacy?

The progress in technology has also changed the way children learn these days. Almost every other 7 years old can be seen sitting with some mobile device learning new things or just having fun. Such skills are now considered common. But the important thing to understand is that does the child know how to make appropriate and correct usage of these digital tools?

Digital literacy teaches exactly that. It provides the knowledge and also the understanding needed so that we can use such digital tools in a more useful and apt way. It teaches us to apply digital tools to the tasks we do on a daily basis more effectively.

Digital literacy has become as crucial as reading and writing. Hence schools in Dubai are teaching it with full gusto.

How important is Digital Literacy?

Unlike the people of Gen Z who were exposed to the wonders of the internet when they were of a certain age, kids nowadays, known as Generation Alpha,  are born with a proverbial silver spoon which is the internet. 

With such a rise in the use of digital technology to learn and do other things, the importance of Digital Literacy cannot be underestimated in any way.

Some of the primary reasons why Digital Literacy is so essential are

  1. It helps in getting a fundamental understanding of how digital tools like computers and other things work. 
  2. Digital literacy has the potential to revolutionize the way learning happens. It enables students to learn according to their comfort and expands the classroom to a more global platform.
  3. As seen in the market jobs are witnessing an increase in automation. Thus digital literacy has also become a necessity to increase one’s employability. Studies show that almost 81% of employers consider digital literacy to be an essential skill.
  4.  Digital literacy is also the key to make children aware of the dangers that the internet and technology pose and be aware of how to avoid them.

How to design a Digital Literacy curriculum?

Integration of Digital Literacy into the present curriculum is no easy task. To make it really effective teachers need to be familiar with ICT (Information and Communications Technology)

Introduction of Digital Media to students can be done in 3 simple steps:

1. Teaching students how to decode digital data

When teaching a new concept in class, teachers can encourage the students to look up the meanings and definitions online. Show them how google works and help them understand which search results are meaningful and show true results. Encourage them to ask questions before they trust any online content, so that get an understanding of which content to trust and which do not.

2. Encouraging students to publish their own text

The best way to introduce Digital Literacy is by helping students be a part of it. Making assignments digital is the first step towards this goal. Encourage students to edit online content on sites like Wikipedia after analysis and even start writing blogs. Even productive use of social media can be encouraged.

3. Guide the students properly as to how to become responsible citizens.

The internet has its own share of disadvantages and even threats. There is cyberbullying, cyberstalking, phishing scams, and outright theft of data. So students must be taught how to maintain a distance so as to avoid such dangers. Also, issues like plagiarism, etiquettes when online among others also need to be taught to students.

So as can be seen clearly in today’s digital age Digital Literacy carries utmost importance. Hence the schools in Dubai are coming up with innovative curriculums to make students understand the uses as well as the dangers that digital technology holds.