Technology forms a large part of this world and is used on a daily basis by the majority of teenagers (Lenhart, 2015). Which such large proportions of school age people using technology, it is important to teach them the correct methods of using those digital devices and services. We need to aim at making them digitally fluent rather than just digitally literate (Biggs, 2011). Schools, teachers, parents and the students themselves need to be taught in a safe environment the correct and safest ways to use technology, as random stumbling around on the internet can lead to harmful practices and results, such as bullying, grooming etc. (White, 2013).
Digitally fluent students will be able to more proactively create and use the resources available to engage and share their work with others in the community (Biggs, 2011). Creating classes that teach students not only what is involved in becoming digitally fluent, but also create platforms that they can use to achieve fluency, will have the greatest effect on how quickly and proficiently they will achieve their goals (Holland, 2013). It is always better to figure out what you are trying to learn, than to have someone show you.
Technological innovation is constantly occurring, and these kinds of major changes can have major effects on the human brain (White, 2013). Students and teachers who are digital fluent will be able to keep up with the changes as they are able to grasp new concepts and figure out how these new innovations will work with what already exists and how it will improve and change the ways we learn and interact with one another. If we do not strive to go as far as possible in turning more people from literate to fluent, these innovations will all be for naught.
Lenhart, A. (2015). Teens, Social Media and Technology Overview 2015. Retrieved from http://www.pewinternet.org/2015/04/09/teens-social-media-technology-2015/
Biggs, C. (2011). The Difference Between Digital Literacy and Digital Fluency. [Web log post] Retrieved from http://www.socialens.com/blog/2011/02/05/the-difference-between-digital-literacy-and-digital-fluency/
White, G. (2013). Digital Fluency for the Digital Age. Retrieved from https://rd.acer.edu.au/article/digital-fluency-for-the-digital-age
White, G. (2013). Digital Fluency: Skills Necessary for Learning in a Digital Age. Retrieved from http://research.acer.edu.au/cgi/viewcontent.cgi?article=1006&context=digital_learning
TEDx Talks. (Belshaw, D.) (2012). The Essential Elements of Digital Literacies: Doug Belshaw at TEDxWarwick. Retrieved from https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=A8yQPoTcZ78
Holland, B. (2013). Building Technology Fluency: Preparing Students to be Digital Learners. [Web log post]. Retrieved from http://www.edutopia.org/blog/building-tech-fluency-digital-learners-beth-holland