Welcome to OTAN, your Outreach and Technical Assistance Network.
[debbie jensen] I teach basic skills to adult students in Southern California. And I work for OTAN. Today, I want to share with you 21Things4Students. Repeatedly, we have been told we need to help our students with three important 21st century skills-- create, collaborate, and communicate. 21Things4Students was designed for just that. Here, your students will create their own digital portfolios, collaborate with each other, and communicate, sharing what they have learned. And with every step, they are taught the digital skills needed to complete each task.
According to the site itself, 21Things4Students is an online resource to help students improve their technology proficiency as they prepare for success in the real world. You will love this resource, not only for your students, but for your class, and also for yourself. This website has everything you want or need to teach your students about digital literacy and citizenship. It is an online resource for all. It is free and it is standards aligned.
There are no logins or passwords necessary. It not only teaches students, but it also has a section dedicated to teachers who may feel they lack some of the skills themselves. More on that later. Here are just some of the 21 areas of study included. See if these are skills you are trying to teach your students.
Basics, collaboration, digital footprint, cyber safety, be legal and fair, troubleshooting, search strategies, powerful presentations, social networking, creative communication, digital storytelling, and mobile computing. Each area is broken into quests, which are project-based activities, using free internet resources throughout. Breaking it down further, each quest includes videos, learning objectives, step-by-step instructions, vocabulary, quizzes, and more.
On the first page, select Begin Here. You have an orientation to 21Things4Students. It introduces the 21 Things for big ideas presented at the site. They also introduce the roadmaps, checklists, feedback, and surveys that will help students move through the course.
21Things4Students started with seven goals. They are the goals of every teacher. As I go through them, see how many you want to teach your students. Goal number 1-- we want our students to become empowered learners by improving technology skills. Basics includes navigation, image capture, shortcuts, web browser safety, online, email, and even correct etiquette.
Goal 2-- students will learn to be safe and smart online and knowledgeable digital citizens. Students are taught about bullying, scams, passwords, cyber safety, and digital footprint, including this log of daily digital media use. Goal number 3-- we want students to think critically about online resources and to know how to use them effectively to create and construct artifacts. They will learn how to select media, evaluate a website, and consider, is it fake news. They will learn how to cite sources, avoiding plagiarism.
Goal 4-- students need to develop problem solving, planning, and design thinking skills. These are great skills, not just in troubleshooting the machine, but also in understanding and using design process. Goal 5-- you'll be excited to help them discover and use tools and strategies for collecting and analyzing data. These are free programs available on the internet. But with 21 Things, it goes beyond just the tools and helps our students explore and analyze the data.
Goal 6-- students will learn to express themselves creatively by using a variety of media tools that are appropriate to specific tasks. For example, learning about digital storytelling, digital portraits, and presentations. And finally, goal 7. Students will learn to make positive contributions as collaborators in local and global communities. They will practice expanding their digital footprint, collaborating outside the classroom, and using social networking.
21Things4Students also includes badging and certificates. If all these wasn't enough, this site also offers help for teachers. The section called 21Things4Teachers has the goal to provide a single site of free resources and tutorials which meet the international educational technology standards and offer any time training to be used for professional development. Its resources are designed to serve a variety of models for PD.
Here, you can find help in facing your class in the digital age, field flipping your classroom, and learning how to use the tools for presenting them to the student. You will learn how to differentiate instruction and include universal design in your lesson, and how to improve evaluation and assessment in your classroom. The site is designed to update information so you can keep up on emerging technologies.
21Things4Students is large and comprehensive. It will make a difference in your classroom, for you, and your students, as you use technology and teach technology in our digital age. Try it.
Thank you. And as a reminder, OTAN supports California adult education agencies who are integrating, improving, and maintaining technology use in the classroom. Always stay informed by visiting the OTAN website at www.otan.us. And be sure to subscribe to our YouTube channel, like us on Facebook, and follow us on Twitter.