Learning in the digital world
School has changed since most Digital Parents were in the classroom. These days, blackboards and chalk have been replaced by interactive whiteboards and iPads. Where there might have been one computer in the library 25 years ago, today’s digital children have access to rooms full of digital technology from laptops to recording studios.
These huge leaps forward in technology and its use in schools around the world, including Qatar, have affected the way that traditional subjects are taught, and introduced completely new ones to the curriculum.
- Geography students can use Google Earth to ‘travel’ virtually to every corner of the globe
- Primary school children can play fun games online to develop their numeracy skills
- History students can access articles and journals through the Qatar National Library (QNL) database (free registration required)
- Performing arts students can access music recording studios and video editing suites
The latest smartphones and tablets can record and edit music and video, take photographs, and draw and paint digital images. Whether it’s at school or at home, digital technology has opened up a world of new opportunities for young people to express their creativity.
Digital technology and education
There are three main areas of learning that Digital Parents should be aware of when finding out about the way that the internet and digital technology have had an impact on their children’s education.
As digital technology has expanded into every area of modern life, the need for our children to understand and be able to use it has never been more important. Teaching ICT skills in Qatar’s schools has become a core part of the curriculum to ensure that present and future generations of Qatar’s young people are ready to work in the digital world.
Learning through technology
As well as learning how to use digital technology itself, our children are increasingly using it as a tool to learn in other areas too. Whether at school or at home, internet-enabled technology and the web are now at the heart of education for children and young people. Visit our expert advice section where you can read about just one way in which digital technology is being used as an educational tool.
Finally, the internet has opened up a world of information. In just seconds our digital children can access facts and figures about almost any subject. It is so much easier to use a search engine like Google or Yahoo than to go to a library and find a book.
However, there is a problem with this approach to fact-finding; not everything on the web is reliable! Anybody can publish on the internet, and as a result there can be a lot of inaccurate, outdated and even deliberately misleading information. Visit the ‘internet safety’ page on the Vodafone AmanTECH website and scroll down for a Digital Parents’ guide to the importance of making sure that the information your children are accessing is trustworthy.
Digital learning through the generations
Learning digital skills isn’t limited to our children. Digital Parents and grandparents in Qatar are being offered to opportunity to learn as well.
In May 2015, the Ministry of Transport and Communications launched the Wasla Intergenerational Learning Programme which aims to help older generations in Qatar to develop ICT skills with the help of children and young people. Working with independent and international schools, the programme will help people in Qatar aged over 40 to gain the knowledge and skills to make the most of the digital world.