- Students need digital skills to complete homework assignments and participate in classrooms that are increasingly embedded with technology as well as complete social and job-related tasks, and it is important that schools foster skills in multiple areas.
- According to eSchool News, the International Society for Technology in Education (ISTE) recommends schools develop digital skills in students relating to creativity and innovation, communication and collaboration, research and information fluency, critical thinking, problem-solving, and decision-making, digital citizenship and technology operations and concepts.
- ISTE also created profiles for what students should know during four different age ranges, but the key to sharpening these skills among student groups is giving them access to digital tools and the internet, along with plenty of opportunities to use them.
There is a large debate over how much schools should change their curriculum to adapt to the new economy and digital world. When the Common Core State Standards did not mandate students learn cursive, parents in communities across the country went into a tailspin. But with limited instruction time, schools that are forced to choose between teaching cursive and digital skills that are arguably more important to a student’s future success should not be blamed for cutting the former.
The same logic can apply to math curricula. Students are asked to practice computation and only eventually graduate to thinking about higher-level problems, when adults always have access to a calculator if they want it. Google for Education’s Jonathan Rochelle argues schools should leave the computation to computers and ask students to draw conclusions from data and solve other problems.