Good news from @EARLI2021 conference. The joint proposal of the Detect Project researchers titled “Key elements of critical digital literacies from the perspective of school education” was accepted. See you in August!
The 3rd Partners meeting of the Detect project takes place on 21-22 January 2021: we’ll discuss about the finalisation of the first Output and the elaboration of our MOOC. We planned to be in Barcelona, but due to the current situation we’ll make it online: let’s hope to meet all face to face soon!
The partners of the DETECT project successfully held their first Learning, Teaching and Training Activity (LTTA 1) online in November 2020, due to the ongoing pandemic crisis. Initially the event was going to be held at the University of Helsinki and would have brought together researchers, teachers and teacher educators from Finland, Italy, Spain and the UK. Although this was not possible to organise face-to-face, a three-day virtual event took place and participants were able to work together in national and transnational teams. The event aimed to raise educators’ awareness and provide training in relation to critical digital literacies. The different activities enabled participants to develop an in-depth understanding of the different dimensions of critical digital literacies and their role in supporting teaching, learning and professional development.
Day 1: 19 November
The first day of the workshop focused on introducing the Critical Digital Literacies (CDL) framework that has been developed as part of Intellectual Output 1 as well as present some preliminary results from the SELFIE survey and the focus group interviews with teachers in Finland, Italy, Spain and the UK. Examples and good practices of supporting CDL from each school in the four countries were shared and participants engaged in collaborative discussion regarding other dimensions of the CDL framework.
Screenshot 2: Arja Kangasharju from Lintumetsä School presenting their project on ‘Learning in online literature discussions’
Day 2: 19 November
The second day of LTTA 1 focused on presenting experimental activities carried out within the project as part of planning for the MOOC (IO2). The first session focused on Virolai’s methodology “Aprenentatge-Servei” (Learning for Service) where the students of secondary education prepare resources and activities to support students in primary education. This activity embeddeds a critical digital literacy approach for both primary and secondary education.
Screenshot 2: Carol de Britos presenting Escola Virolai’s project on ‘Learning in online literature discussions’
The subsequent sessions explored Designing for Learning methodologies and looked at experimental activities promoting the CDL framework. Participants worked collaboratively to reflect on how their own professional knowledge can support other teachers’ learning and also explored how a design thinking scheme can support the development of CDL at their school.
Screenshot 3: Juliana Raffaghelli from Universitat Oberta de Catalunya presenting on ‘Designing for Learning: activities promoting a CDL’
Day 3: 20 November
Day three of the LTTA 1 focused on exploring CDL resources that are currently in use by participating schools while participants also worked collaboratively towards further development of educational scenarios for the Toolkit (IO3).
Screenshot 4: Isobel Evans from Old Ford Primary presenting their educational scenario example
Screenshot 5: Osvaldo Di Cuffa from Istituto Sassetti Peruzzi presenting their educational scenario
The last day offered participants further opportunities to exchange ideas on possible educational scenarios in relation to CLD and get inspired by others. All input from three days was collected and will be used for further developing the MOOC and Toolkit as means of supporting educators with developing their Critical Digital Literacies.
All in all, this three-day virtual event enabled participants to be introduced to new theoretical and methodological frameworks, work collaboratively, brainstorm ideas and exchange good practices. We are hoping we will be able to organise LTTA 2 in Florence in spring 2020 so watch this space and follow our Twitter account if you are interested in further updates about our project.
18-20 November 2020.
The Learning, Teaching and Training Activity aims to raise educators’ awareness and provide training in relation to critical digital literacies over the course of three days. The different activities will enable participants to develop an in-depth understanding of the different dimensions of critical digital literacies and their role in supporting teaching, learning and professional development. During the event, participants from Finland, Italy, Spain and the UK will work collaboratively online in transnational teams.
The work in the DETECT project has progressed during the spring in spite of the challenging situation. One of the main aims in the project is to develop a framework defining central elements of Critical Digital Literacy for schools to take into account in teaching, learning and professional development activities. A draft framework was created based on a literacy review.
One part of the framework development is the task for researchers to organize focus group interviews with teachers of the participating schools where teachers discuss their practices related to CDL and give comments to the draft framework. Because of COVID19, it was not possible to meet f2f; therefore we organized teachers’ focus group meetings online using Zoom. Two group discussions with altogether seven teachers were organized in Finland in May 2020. In the figure, you can see a screenshot from a Finnish focus group session where the draft framework about CDL is displayed and discussed with the participants.
Although the topics discussed in the focus groups covered broadly the usage of digital technologies in schools, the online teaching period that the teachers were experiencing because of COVID19, had an effect of the comments and concerns raised up in the discussions. Many challenges and possibilities of digital participation had become familiar for the teachers: how to promote the sense of community, how to follow each students’ progress, how to encourage students’ to participate in online sessions, etc. The participants also remarked that it was great to discuss with colleagues to share experiences and pedagogical idea, because there is not usually time for that in daily schoolwork. One interesting observation of the group interviews from the researchers’ viewpoint was that it was very easy to organize the group meeting online, because all participants had good skills to attend the online meetings!
More results about the focus group interviews will be published when the researchers of the project have had time to analyse them in detail.
Minna Lakkala – Technology in Education Research Group, University of Helsinki