The Evolution of Digital Age Teaching and Learning

Trends, Challenges, and Developments in K-12 Educational Technology

Digital Evolution

What is the future of learning? How can we bridge the gap between home and classroom? What is at the intersection of instruction and innovation? As you explore these trends, challenges, and developments, thoughtfully consider how these will impact your own classroom and the Questions posed for each Step.


1.  How do your perceptions compare to national research?

According to the 2016 Digital Education Survey (Deloitte),

  • 79% of teachers use technology to make learning more interesting
  • 90% of kids use digital learning at home (with 2/3 of them starting by the age of 5)
  • 52% of teachers use at least one digital device a day

In addition, the survey cited the top five devices used weekly in the classroom include laptops, desktops, tablets, interactive whiteboards, and smartphones. Find out more by viewing the video or downloading the infographic

2. How do the trends, challenges, and developments impact your own classroom?

The annual NMC/CoSN Horizon Report for K-12 Education (2017 ed.) gives key trends, significant challenges, and important developments in educational technology, including:

  • Trends: cultures of innovation, deeper learning, coding and STEAM
  • Challenges: authentic learning, improving digital literacy, rethinking roles of teachers, and teaching computational thinking
  • Developments: makerspaces, robotics, virtual reality, the Internet of things, and artificial intelligence

Find out more by viewing the video or digital toolkit.  

3. What tools or activities might you use in your own classroom? What elements of the digital nation impact your own classroom?

Explore how the Digital Nation impacts instruction. Visit PBS Learning's Digital Workshops Digital Nation: Life on the Virtual Frontier. Explore the resources and activities (polls, quizzes, videos, reading) that impact classroom instruction.   

Choose from Digital Parenting: Protecting and Empowering Kids21st Century Schools: Learning in the Digital AgeThe Digital You: Attention, Multitasking, and Addition, or Learning in Virtual Worlds

4. What is your perception of the impact of multitasking on you professionally? on students? in your classroom?

View "Multitasking at MIT" to see this concept in action. 

After reviewing the resources and considered emerging trends, move on to Digital Age Teaching.


Addressing the ISTE Standards For Educators

1c. Stay current with research that supports improve student learning outcomes, including findings from the learning sciences.

2b. Advocate for equitable access to educational technology, digital content and learning opportunities to meet the diverse needs of all students.
2c. Model for colleagues the identification, exploration, 
evaluation, curation and adoption of 
new digital resources and tools for learning.

3b. Establish a learning culture that promotes curiosity and 
critical examination of online resources and fosters digital literacy and media fluency.

5a. Use technology to create, adapt and personalize learning experiences that foster independent learning and accommodate learner differences and needs.
5b. Design authentic learning activities that align with content area standards and use digital tools and resources to maximize active, deep learning.
5c. Explore and apply instructional design principles to create innovative digital learning environments that engage and support learning.

6a. Foster a culture where students take ownership of their learning goals and outcomes in both independent and group settings.
6b. Manage the use of technology and student learning strategies in digital platforms, virtual environments, hands-on makerspaces or in the field.
6c. Create learning opportunities that challenge students to use a design process and computational thinking to innovate and solve problems.
6d. Model and nurture creativity and creative expression to communicate ideas, knowledge or connections.

7a. Provide alternative ways for students to demonstrate competency and reflect on their learning using technology.
7b. Use technology to design and implement a variety of formative and summative assessments that accommodate learner needs, provide timely feedback to students and inform instruction.
7c. Use assessment data to guide progress and communicate with students, parents and education stakeholders to build student self-direction.

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