Participation and the digital divide. Teachers’ role in bridging the gap.

The oxford dictionary (oxforddictionaries.com) describes the digital divide as “the gulf between those who have ready access to computers and the internet and those who do not”. It is evident that Australia has low-socio economic areas and students’ in these areas may not have access to digital technology due the costs of computers and internet. 07202011_rich_poor_baby_articleAs a teacher should I be asking who has access to technology at home or is that irrelevant if I can test their skills in the classroom? I think children are inquisitive and if technology is used and taught from reception, children would build confidence in using it regardless of status.

In saying that, is the issue of the students not having access and using digital technologies or is it that the divide actually may be the issue of the teacher? Price (n.d.) concluded that in an evaluation completed by the National Science Foundation that the widest divide was that between classrooms, as some teachers use technology and some do not.

Read more on “How to bridge the digital divide in your school” @ http://www.lehigh.edu/~inexlife/papers/principal.pdf

Technology-will-not-replace-teachers

I found this quote to be insightful as well as validating the importance to me as a future educator to develop my own digital competencies.

Howell (2012, p. 55) discusses that parent’s want the school to bridge the digital divide between what they can afford at home and what they would like their children to have capabilities in. Does this mean that as a teacher I am to emphasis technology in a variety of aspects of teaching? I feel that it is teachers’ responsibility to provide students with an education rich in digital technologies. Whilst the digital divide may always exist for socio economic reasons the one thing I can change is my capabilities in using digital technologies in the classroom.

Williams came to the same conclusion in the below presentation.

References

Howell, J. (2012) Teaching with ICT: Digital pedagogies for collaboration and creativity.  Melbourne, Australia: Oxford University Press.

Kirsch, J. (2012). Technology will not replace teachers [image]. Retrieved from http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-jfAEl9k3ibM/UIRftpfAgvI/AAAAAAAAAIY/MmRSfbG_lV4/s1600/Technology%2520Replacing%2520Teachers.png

The12imam.com. (2015). Rich or poor child [image]. Retrieved from http://www.the12imam.com/en/wp-content/uploads/2015/01/72C5D4C9-B067-42B8-BDE0-F6047AFBBA6407202011_rich_poor_baby_article.jpg

Williams, K. (2011). Bridging the digital divide: How schools can prepare students to be good digital citizens in low socio economic areas. Retrieved from http://www.slideshare.net/williamslibrary/bridging-the-digital-divide-how-schools-can-prepare-students-to-be-good-digital-citizens-in-low-socio-economic-areas-7733844

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