Digital literacy skills for students basically is about their ability for to search, evaluate, and use information effectively from the Internet. Nowadays, almost all of us are using online information services, but do we know how to use it effectively?
Given that our world is digitally connected and information is one of the most important resources of the 21st century skills for kids, it is vital that parents and school leaders teach children several effective ways to search and use online information.
In this blog, Skidos would like to discuss about what digital literacy for children is, what impact does digital literacy have on students, give several reasons why digital literacy is a life skill for kids to master and recommend some tips, resources, activities with numerous factors influence students’ digital literacy.
What is digital literacy skills for students?
Digital Literacy has also been known as information literacy or media literacy and generally, they all refer to the ability to identify, find, evaluate, and use information effectively.
Not only digital literacy means being able to search and use information online in an effective way, it also describes the ability to create content for online platforms and know about the dark sides of technology or several negative effects technology may exert on us.
It is true that the Internet network gives youngsters unlimited access to tools and resources for learning new knowledge and skills. The information that kids get from the Internet, however, may not always be accurate or high-quality.
Much of the information available on the Internet can be fake news or outdated data to concern with the problem while our children lacking digital literacy. Having great digital literacy, children will know how to search for information, evaluate information with regard to the quality, credibility, and validity of websites, and then utilise them in a useful way.
Why digital literacy is important for kids?
What impact does digital literacy have on students? There are many reasons behind the increasing importance of digital literacy and Skidos would like to emphasize 3 utmost reasons why it is important for kids.
Firstly, the Internet has greatly facilitated people’ study journey in recent years and it is essential to acquire digital literacy for students to utilise the greatness of technology for learning. Nowadays, young students are expected to get access to online study materials, to send their homework, group assignments to their teachers and to receive course-books, slideshows, documentation, from their instructors, to collaborate with classmates virtually on group projects, and join class discussions via chat rooms, forums.
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Information from online platforms is just within children’ reach, therefore, it is a must that kids should build up digital literacy from a young age so that they know how they can search online, what they can find online and what appropriate content they can produce online.
Plus, because of the constantly evolving COVID-19 situation, a large number of schools in different countries must be closed and thus, online learning is the only way for kids to keep study safely. Improving digital literacy can help your kids overcome learning difficulties at this situation and prepare them for the better world of tomorrow.
Secondly, children should enhance their digital literacy for their own safety and to enhance their life experience. While social media platforms are so popular these days, kids need to understand how it works, who can see it, and what digital data they provide others to know about so as to protect themselves.
Imagine if your kids may share inappropriate photos or reveal too much privacy on the Internet, they can fall prey to bad people, or be bullied, attacked or penalized by others. In another scenario, instead of your children trying to complete their own writing task themselves, they can find a sample from the Internet and copy it 100% without knowing that they have made a plagiarism mistake.
Or the information your kids get from the Internet are fake news or intended advertisements that are not reliable enough to use, they may fail to learn effectively from the Internet. It is essential that kids enhance their media information literacy for their safety and to make use of the Internet as a great source to uncover accurate, high quality information and have better experience online.
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Hopefully, with great digital literacy, kids can get the habit of checking out an author’s credibility, question whether a photo has been appropriately uploaded, give reference to the sources of information they use and to avoid being misled by unreliable data.
Moreover, digital literacy not only can facilitate kids to learn effectively but it can also equip them with many valuable skills and progressive knowledge to be successful later on. When having great digital literacies, not only do young children learn how to use digital devices effectively, but they also learn how to sharpen their communication, language and interpersonal skills.
When kids grow and engage the world through images, diagrams, videos on the Internet, in the meantime, they are improving their reading and writing skills through learning with these digital materials. Moreover, children can also develop creativity skills that support them to critically think, effectively communicate, design and reach out to the world both online and offline.
Besides, the more modern the world becomes; the more job requirements are involved with digital skills. For example, employers usually need digitally literate employees with computer skills to search, evaluate, present data to solve complex problems in various areas. If your kids are prepared with high media literacy from a young age, he or she will possibly find it a bit easier to get a job in the future.
How to improve digital literacy for kids? & Digital literacy for student assignments
Digital Literacy is arguably an essential skill that a kid should have to learn and to reap the benefits of the Internet to make progress at school and in their life in general. Hereby, Skidos would like to suggest some tips to teach your kids digital literacy for students activities, practices, right manners.
#1 Allow kids/children to find information online and experiment using websites.
If your children are curious and keep asking you questions, you can encourage them to find the answers online to get used to digital tools by searching on Google or Kiddle. Along with that, please make sure that they use Internet under your supervision and in the appropriate amount of time. This activity can both nurture your kids’ curiosity, build your children’s resourcefulness, while developing their cognitive and decision-making skills.
When your kid/students is searching for information on web pages, this is the right time that you taught teach them about some potential dangers of the Internet. Just like you usually tell your children to take caution to avoid dangerous situations in real life, you should alert children about dark sides of the Internet when they go online.
For example, teach your students if they might see any contents that could be dangerous or unhealthy, they should not look at it and inform you about it. Another advice you can give your kids is not to look for information from several unreliable websites that you may know about or click on something tempting in the web page that can contain virus to destroy the computers, tablets or mobile phones.
#2 Tell kids to use the Internet in a good manner.
We are now very much involved with digital platforms and just as important as the table manners, digital etiquette is something you should teach your kids. To be more specific, kids should be taught to understand online safety guidelines; for example, not to declare too much private information on the Internet and to know about the huge effects of the actions they take online.
Just hitting a like on a post on Facebook or Instagram in which a person is being treated badly can get other people assume that your child agrees with the treatment and the bullies.
Remember to tell your kids to behave and treat people the way they want to be treated when they go online. Besides, as your children can create digital contents quite often, make sure to tell them to check their posts and photos or videos carefully before uploading them online so that their posts plus pictures and videos look positive and appropriate for people of all ages to see.
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#4 Teach your children to be create good digital content
Nowadays, children are expected to learn basic skills of creating digital contents such as being able to typing up a document, sending an email as well as taking photos and making videos. It is essential that parents help kids to generate high quality digital products with appropriate contents.
For example, you can teach them how to record, edit videos and pictures in the computers, tablets or mobile phones using some user-friendly apps. It will be great to see your children being easily editing video and photos and get to receive outstanding piece of work from them. Or you can challenge them with doing projects for writing and storytelling using videos or photos to encourage their digital literacy and creativity skills.
In conclusion, digital literacy is increasingly important for children around the world to master in the 21st century as it is a driving factor for children’s development in learning at school at the moment and in working with others in the future. Skidos believes that there will be a great deal of useful suggestions for fostering digital literacy in children available out there. If you have any other interesting thoughts or tips, please let us know!
4. Safe Search Engines, Platforms for Children to Practice Digital Literacy
Kidtopia is Google’s custom student safe search engine for preschool and elementary students that indexes web pages approved by educators.”
2- KidsSearch.com is Child Safe Search Engine.
We use Google Safe Search technology and advanced filtering tools on web content. We provide kid-friendly links through our directory, each of which is peer reviewed for relevant, useful and interesting content. ‘
3- Teaching good children
Teaching a Good Child is a collection of links to websites carefully selected by a student teacher as well as their parents and teachers. The site is designed for elementary classes, but many classes will also be of interest to older students.
4- Joking – Digital Literacy sites for students
Kiddle is an intuitive kids search engine powered by Google that provides kid-safe web search, pictures and videos. The results are checked by the editors. ”
DuckDuckGo is not necessarily designed for children, but it does provide features that allow users to search the internet without compromising their personal or privacy information. DuckDuckGo does not store search history, does not run ads, does not track users.
GoGooligans is another children’s search engine that offers several important features including: using Google’s index to retrieve results, applying different types of filters, excluding websites and words key mismatch, provide search in more than 30 languages and more.
KidRex is a fun and safe search for kids! KidRex Search emphasizes child-related websites across the web and is powered by Google Custom Search ™ and uses Google SafeSearch ™ technology. Sources: educatorstechnology.com
8 – SKIDOS Educational Games for Kids
Let your child learn as they play games. SKIDOS’ educational games with no ads help improve math accuracy, build vocabulary & develop an early interest in coding. We help your kids develop 21st century skills & assist them to become part of the “digital generation” as we like to call it.