I was asked the other day about digital literacy and what we should be teaching our children. As always I was struck speechless as I was overwhelmed trying to think of digital literacy as one singular topic. There are just so many pieces to it. Seeing this digital literacy graphic validated my feeling of overwhelm – eight major categories with three subtopics each for a grand total of 24!
Without a real thought out plan we cannot hope to teach the digital literacy skills necessary to navigate our new reality. Seeing these types of charts reinforce the complexity of this new landscape and force librarians to face the challenge of teaching digital literacy head on.
What I love is that these skills enumerated are more than just an introduction to different technologies and tools, but encompass what it means to live a full digital life. Information and digital literacy is more than just being able to post a photo on Facebook. Real literacy is thinking should I post this photo in the first place? Does this photo put me at risk from predators? Will this photo endanger my future someday? Should someone else get credited for this photo? Will this photo hurt others? These are the real digital literacy skills necessary to be a responsible digital citizen and they apply to all. This graphic could be used to guide the planning of instruction for our senior citizens who often are overwhelmed by the digital landscape and for educating our children.