We've talked about why we need to implement digital technology into our English classrooms, and we've covered multiple forms of digital writing, but there is one important piece missing in the push for digital literacy. Students need to see their work published.
Moving to a more digital writing format allows great advances in creativity and course work, but the most important aspect that digital writing allows is the chance to be published. To get the essays out of the teachers' hands and into the world's! Knowing that the essay you are writing, or the poem you are crafting is simply to check off a standard in the Common Core is simply boring.
What should be included in the assignments is a publishing step, and I don't mean just printing the paper, but actually reaching out to others. Making it a requirement to share their work either through social media, blogs and email. Teachers should not be the last eyes to see the hard work of a student's two week effort to write their essay. Publishing should be more than just clicking print, it should mean it is actually going to be read!
Joel Klein, former New York City schools' chief who now leads News Corp.'s
education tablet program, said it best as he cautioned the public that "we must use technology
to empower teachers and improve the way students learn. At its best, education technology will change the face of education by helping teachers manage the classroom and personalize instruction."
Did you read that? Education technology will empower!