What does it mean to be literate in the 21st century? A nicely presented video from a teacher’s perspective, identifying the various multidimensional interpretations of literacy for the 21st century learner. Literacy today encompasses so much more than the simple reading, writing and arithmetic of the previous era. Literacy in the 21st century involves being well versed in many areas in addition to the basics. These areas include, at a bare minimum, computer literacy &/ or technology literacy, information literacy and media literacy. As one gentleman in the video, so eloquently put it; “Literacy means, to me, being able to understand and read the world”. There is no doubt that today’s world is online and the classroom needs be connected.
With this new definition of literacy comes a new role for our educators. As the video states, technology is now a part of our everyday lifestyle and this element needs to be incorporated into our schools. Students are often overwhelmed with the volumes of information available. They need time and guidance to identify and absorb what’s vital and toss away the unnecessary. Teachers are embracing a mentorship role and are often part of an active “partnership in learning”. This new methodology is the key element needed to enable our 21st century leaner to reach the critical thinking stage of their education.
The challenge of the 21st century educator is to provide today’s young people with the knowledge necessary to be a skilled, responsible digital citizen and lifelong learner. Are you up for the challenge?