It's personal - for students and teachers. Most of our students use technology in a range of ways in their everyday lives. Many students have skills in using technology which their teachers have not yet practised and which are never utilised at school. Some students have technological skills at a higher level, and the ability to teach these skills to teachers and other students.
At Tea Tree Gully Primary School we have invited students to apply for the role of Digital Leader. Their applications had to address their technological skills and interests as well as their abilities as leaders and supportive school community members. Students from Years 4 to 7 prepared applications in a range of ways, from written application to video, PhotoStory and PowerPoint.
Those selected for the role as Digital Leaders participated in fortnightly training sessions to enhance their skills, practising and collaborating on tasks designed to move them from being users to being leaders. Digital Leaders began being used by teachers to assist with tasks as teachers began learning how to use iPads. They took on the role of tutor or teacher for their own class or other classes in a range of areas, including game programming. Some visited the kindergarten to assist teachers there by creating an assessment video of some of the children in an oral language task. The Digital Leaders spent time developing their interests so they could teach others (including the teachers). They delighted in sharing their knowledge and learning.
This session is the story of our Digital Leaders – how we implemented the idea and what we have done so far. The session will include sharing from some of the Digital Leaders and the opportunity to talk with them. It will include discussion on empowering students through the role of Digital Leader, including students with disabilities. It will also highlight the importance of students being valued members of the collective intelligence in classrooms, especially when using technology.