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Digital Literacy: Becoming digitally literate


In this section, you can find some helpful ideas on how to plan your lessons on digital literacy.

Teachers’ guide

The lessons had a particular emphasis on facilitating and orchestrating classroom dialogue. Children are given plentiful opportunities to share and reflect on their experiences and give opinions about the impact that their digital lives have on their physical and emotional wellbeing. To facilitate this, children were encouraged to engage in more exploratory talk where questions could lead to other questions. drew on:

  • Introducing technical vocabulary such as dopamine, pre-frontal cortex, intermittent rewards
  • Stem sentences such as ‘building on x’s idea…’, ‘I noticed…’, ‘I agree/disagree with … because …’
  • Using stimuli to generate discussion such as an historical video clip showing a psychology experiment of rats being exposed to operating conditioning.
  • Collaborative learning tasks that give children the opportunity to discuss for example how relevant certain talking point prompts are relevant to their digital lives.
  • Mediated online experiences: through playing an online game and using a teacher-moderated social media platform, children had experiential opportunities to explore the issues discussed in class.
  • Reflection opportunities through discussion and journaling for children to think about what they have learned and what personal action points they will take forwards in their own lives.


  • As a teacher, share personal experiences, reflections on own use of technology and areas you think you need to improve in relation to your own digital life. This models honest and opens the dialogic space for the children to also be honest
  • Listen carefully for comments children make in relation to e-safety – do they mention having experience of being cyberbullied or unhealthy digital habits such as using screens until late into the night? Knowing this information allows for related follow-up with safeguarding processes
  • Be curious to learn from children’s experiences and their viewpoints. Children have socialized within a connected and online world and make some powerful observations about both positive and negative aspects of technology in their lives.


  • Try and convince children that all technology is harmful or have a set agenda about what the role technology should have in children’s roles. Use difference of opinion as a means for children to explore the complexity and multifaceted forms of their digital lives.
  • Assume that children being able to talk about being digitally literate equates to them yet making changes in their own behaviours.