I recently came across the Digital Learning Horoscope. It’s a survey for teachers to take as a reflective tool about their beliefs and commitment to teaching with and about digital and media literacy, and popular culture. This comes from the work by Renee Hobbs and the Media Education Lab. Some of the questions challenged me to make a decision about what I truly believe is important when applying media and technology to my teaching. Not an easy thing to do during the summer break, but informative for some next steps.
I appreciated that there is no flash or bling on this survey site. It simply presents 48 questions with a 5 point scale of importance. Should be easy right? Give yourself some time to take this one and really think about the importance of digital and media literacy in your own classroom. The results may confirm and reaffirm your understanding of your role in media education. The results may highlight your passion for teaching students about digital literacy. The results will certainly provide you with an opportunity to think deeply about choices you make to support students to understand and connect to their world. As a result, you are provided with an infographic-style page that identifies three areas of strength and two ‘leanings’. The score breakdown provides further insight into your least dominate characteristics. These can also provide some insights e.g. why was I so low in a particular area?
Your digital learning horoscope will identify if you are a demystifier, watchdog, activist, professor, professional, teacher 2.0, techie, spirit guide, motivator, trendsetter, or alternative. The labels are not that important to your overall understanding. It’s not about the label you acquire, but the understanding that you gain about your role and what it means for your students.
My results identified me as a professor, techie, spirit guide with leanings toward empowering and protecting. It confirms that I see the opportunities and advantages of using media and digital technologies as well as the risks and challenges using media and technology in my teaching practice can present. The results reaffirm my dedication to student well-being in recognizing that media and digital presence is a crucial facet of their identity and sense of self worth. My commitment to engage students using digital and media technologies to learn more deeply and authentically was validated.
The results also link to more information where a deeper description is provided, and strengths and challenges are identified. It highlighted my need to think beyond the engagement with flashy technology to ask key questions about how it will apply to the everyday lives of my students.
So, what’s your digital learning horoscope?
What are your leanings when it comes to digital and media literacy in your own teaching practice.
Take the quiz to find out, then tweet out to @reneehobbs to let her know you appreciate the work being done to strengthen the skills of digital and media educators.