In the past 15 years society has changed at a tremendous pace. As global citizens our ability to access information, connect and collaborate has never been as accessible as it is today. With this change comes new demands and skills necessary to successfully navigate this world of technology. The influence of digital literacy has now become at the center of how we do business. Many educational experts today argue that digital literacy is one of the most important lifelong learning tools for students to develop (http://www.thetechedvocate.org/digital-literacy-important-lifelong-learning-tool/).
In room 23 at General Vanier School, Mr. Bourassa and his grade 5/6 students have been trying out all the tools found within Windows 10 and Office 365. The integration of Microsoft OneNote has now become an integral part of learning for students throughout their day. As Microsoft explains: "OneNote is often described as a digital 3-ring binder, or considered to be the Swiss Army Knife of note-taking and 21st century learning."
Some of the benefits both students and Mr. Bourassa have been taking advantage of include:
- Strengthens digital literacy and 21st century skill development.
- Builds on conceptions of digital citizenship.
- Enables differentiation and personalized learning plans.
- Isolates assessment in real time between student and teacher.
- Provides opportunities for independence in time and task management.
- Creates new opportunities to access, collaborate and share content.
- Enables an infinite canvas for presenting content such as free-form digital ink, audio and video clips, images and videos.
- Creates a digital connection between home and school with 24/7 access to all content.
- Increases organizational skills.
- Increases voice and choice for students while allowing content to suit different learning styles.