21st century digital learners and teachers

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By Elma Mae Osana

21st Century Digital Learners and Teachers

ObjectivesTo identify the skills of the 21st Century Digital LearnersTo discuss about the 21st Century Teacher

Digital Learners

The 21st Century dawned as the beginning of the Digital Age- a time of unprecedented growth in technology and its subsequent information explosion. Never before have the tools for information access and management made such an impact on the way we live, work, shop and play. New technologies and tools multiply the market daily and the new technologies of today are outdated almost as soon as the reach the market. Numerous studies and reports have emerged over the past decades that seek to identify the life, career, and learning skills that define the skills needed for success in the 21st century world. While there are some differences in how the skills are categorized or interpreted, there are also many commonalities. Common skills across most of the studies include:

Creativity and Innovation

Using knowledge and understanding to create new ways of thinking in order to find solutions to new problemsTo create new products and servicesThink Creatively:Use a wide range of idea creation techniques( brainstorming)Create new and worthwhile ideas(both incremental and radical concepts)Elaborate, refine, analyze and evaluate ideas in order to improve and maximize creative effortsDemonstrate imagination and curiosityWork Creatively with othersDevelop, implement and communicate new ideas to others effectivelyBe open and responsive to new and diverse perpectives; incorporate group input and feedback into the workDemonstrate originality and inventiveness in work and understand the real worldlimits to adopting new ideasView failure as an opportunity to learn; understand that creativity and innovation is a long-term, cyclical process of a small successes and frequent mistakesImplementing Innovations Act on creatuve ideas to make a tangible and useful contribution to the field in which the innovayion will occur

Critical Thinking and Problem SolvingApplying higher order thinking to new problems and issues, using appropriate reasoning as they effectively analyze the problem and make decisions anout the most effective ways to solve the problem.Reason Effectively Use various of reasoning (e.g inductve,deductive, etc) as appropriate to the situationMake judgements and DecisionsEffectively analyze and evaluate evidence, arguments , claims and beliefsAnalyze the evaluate major alternative points of viewSynthesize and make connections between information and argumentsInterpret onformation and draw concluions based on the best the analysisReflect critically on learning experiences and processesSolve ProblemsSolve different kinds of non-familiar problems in both convetional and innovative ways Identifyand ask significant questions that clarify various points of view and lead to better solutions

CommunicationCommunicting effectively in a wide variety of forms and contexts for a wide range of purposes and using multiple media and technologiesCommunicate ClearlyArticulate thoughts and ideas effectively using oral, written and nonverbalcommunication skills in a variety of forms and contextsListen effectively to decipher meaning, including knowledge, values, attitude, and intentionsUse communication for a range of purpose (e.g to inform, instruct, innovate, and persuade and in diverse environments( including ,ulti-lingual)Utilize multiple media and technologies , and know how to judge their effectiveness a priori as well as assess their impact

CollaborationWorking with others respectfully and effectively to create, use and share knowledge, solutions and innovationsCollaborate with OthersDemonstrate abilitity to work effectively and respectfully with diverse teamsExercise flexibility and willingness to be helpful in making necessary compromises to accomplish a common goalAssume shared responsiblity for collaborative work and value the individual contributions made by each team member

Information Management

Accessing, analyzing, synthesizing, creating sharing information from multiple sources

Effective Use of Technology

Creating the capacity to identify and use technology efficiently, effectively and ethicalyy as a tool to access, organize, evaluate and share information

Career and Life Skills

Developing skills for becoming self-directed , indepent learners and workers who can adapt to change , manage projects, take responsibility for their work, lead others and produce results

Cultural Awareness

Developing cultural competence in working with others by recognizing and respecting cultural differences and work with others from a wide range of cultural and social backgrounds

Information, Media and Technology Skills


Access and Evaluate InformationAccess information efficiently (time and effectively (sources) Evaluate informatkion critically and competentlyUse and Manage InformationUse information accurately and creatively for the issue or problem at handMangae flow of informatkon from a wide variety of sourcesApply a fundmental understanding of the ethical/legal issuse surounding the access and use of information

Media Literacy Analyze MediaUnderstand both how and why media messages rae constructed and for what purposes Examine how individuals intepret messages differently, how values and points of vies are included or excluded , and how media can influence beliefs and behaviorsApply fundamental understanding of the tehical/legal issus surrounding the accsess and use of mediaCreate Media ProductsUnderstand and utilize the most appropriate medai creation tools, characteristics and convetionsUnderstand and effectively utilize the most appropriate expresisions and interpretations in diverse, multi-cultural environments

ICT LiteracyApply TEchnology EffectivelyUSe technology as a tool to research, organize, evaluate and communicate informationUse digitaltechnologies, communication/ networking tools and social networks appropriatelt to access, mange, integrate,evaluate and create information to seccessfully function in a knowledge economyApply a fundamental understanding of vthe ethuical/legal issues surrounding the access and use of information technologies

Integrating 21st Century Skills with ContentThese skills are about the thinking processes and behaviors students will use as they learn subject area content and work woth others to deepen their understanding of the content. All of the frameworks emphasize the need to ground 21st century skills in core content, an expecially in an interdisciplinary fashion. Organizing instruction around important concepts and big ideas helps students create conceptual structures for stiring,retrieving and using information in anew and unanticipated ways. As the 21st century skills are integrated into content, come key design principles include:Connecting the content knowledge to real-world applications and problem situationsEmphasizing deep understanding of the learning Help Students understand and monitor the thinking processes they are usingUsing technology to help students access, analyze organize and share what ther are learning and allow students to independentky locate appropriate tools for th taskProviding opportunities to students to become creators as well as consumers of published informationEngaging students in solving complex problems that require higher orded thinking and application of content and that results in new perspectives and solutions to problems

Instruction that meets the needs of today's students will incorporateA variety of learning ooportunities and activities The use of appropriate technology tools to accomplish learning goals Project-and problem-based learning Cross-curricular connectionsA focus on inquiry and the student-led investigationsCollaborative learning environments, both within beyond the classroom

The Characteristics of a 21st Century Educator

There are essential skills for the Digital learners that should consider in giving appropriate activities and assessments but what about the 21st Century Teacher, what are the characteristics we would expect to see in them?

The Adaptor

Must be able to adapt the curriculumBe able to adapt software and hardwareBe able to adapt to a dynamic teaching experienceMust understannd and apply different learning styles

The Visionary

Must see the potential in the emerging tools and web technologies, grasp and manipulate themCan look at others ideas and envisage how would they use these in their classLooks across the disciplines and through the curricula


Able to leverage these collaborative tools to enchance and captivate our learnersmust be collaborators, sharing , contributing, adapting and inventing

Risk Taker

Must take risks and some times surrender yourself to the students knowledgeHave a vission of what you want and what technology can achieve, identify the goals facilitate learningUse the strength of the digital natives to understand and navigate new products


We expect our students to be life-long learnersmust continue to absorb new possibilities and experiencesmust endeavor to stay currentThe 21st Century Teacher or educator must learn and adapt


Are fluent in tools and technologies that enable communication and collaborationKnow how to use different media in communicationAllows students to be able to express their insight and share their thoughts


Must model the behaviours that are expected from their studentsEducators are often the most consistent part of our student lifeThey model: Tolerance, Acceptance, a wider view than just their curricula areas, global awar