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e-Learning and literacy: The current landscape

Started by Karen Spencer 14 Dec 2012 9:32am () Replies (1)

imagePossibly no surprises here, I guess, from this report just out in the US - Pioneering literacy in the digital wild west: Empowering parents and educators - but it raises some interesting points, nevertheless:

  • It explores the role that technoogy can play in enhancing children's literacy development to strengthen interactions and improve familiarity with letters and words.
  • Technology offers new opportunity for exploring content in exciting and engaging ways which offer multiple pathways for learning.
  • It can provide a way to enhance parent-child-school interactions around learning.

While the report takes a US perspective, it offers a useful scan of the current e-learning/literacy landscape in terms of

  • tech-based products with a literacy focus, 
  • the kinds of literacy skills that are being targeted in apps, games, websites and e-books, and 
  • it highlights examples of projects that aim to bridge the divide between home and school literacy learning.


More guidance needed


However, with little support or guidance for parents and educators in terms of vetting the usefulness of many literacy-based technologies, the report makes the following recommendations, as well as calling for further research in this area:

  1. "Promoting personal connection among parents and educators via social media, cell phones, texting and the development of hybrid (online and offline) learning communities.
  2. Reinforcing basic skills by vetting and making available to parents and educators apps, literacysupportive e-books,and on- and off-line games to play with their children.
  3. Building background knowledge by providing new routes for taking advantage of content-rich library materials,museum offerings, e-book services, immersive games and multimedia “field trips.”
  4. Improving the workforce by connecting educators (including librarians and family child care providers) to each other, to new resources for literacy instruction and active learning, and to professional development opportunities."


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