Archive for the ‘Ethics’ Category


Master the Technology and Share the Cookies

November 12, 2008

Our resource partners at Buddy2 have helpfully passed along the Indiana Department of Education’s K-8 Technology Skill Benchmarks. If you have a kindergartner at home, it’s time to make sure your young person can “identify digital tools by name” – scanner, cell phone, MP3 player, etc. Your 2nd grader should be able to “cite sources of information, print and non-print, for class projects.” Good, because then they’ll be ready for grad school.

Of course, many parents are way behind their kids technologically and need their offspring’s help to log onto secure networks and so on.

What, then, is the pinnacle of this K-8 pyramid of tech skills? The effective 8th grader should be able to:

  • Plan, design, and develop a digital product.
  • Explore technology use in real world applications in a global society.
  • Demonstrate effective use of the Internet and exhibit digital citizenship.

The global society is no problem — one can hardly get involved in any online discussion without Finns, Italians, Australians, Taiwanese, and others putting their 2 euro-cents in. Digital citizenship, though, would definitely take a few weeks to learn, for it is “a complex set of behaviors that define the appropriate use of technology, including the areas of safety, rights, communications, etiquette, education, access, commerce, responsibility, and security.”

In fact, the threads woven through the K-8 benchmarks are these three — productivity, communication, and digital citizenship. Only one of them is concerned solely with the child/machine relationship. The other two have to do with the child/world and child/society interface, still the crucial application where education needs to ensure a higher level of functionality.

This entry was posted by: Nancy