Howard Rheingold has written extensively on what it means to be ‘literate’ in today’s world of exponential information growth and social connectivity. See his excellent article published in EDUCAUSE Review entitled Attention, and other 21st Century Social Media Literacies where he explains that to be information fluent today requires an individual to think critically and to build literacy through:
- critical consumption, and
- network awareness.
This video focusses ‘critical consumption’ – the ability to think critically and identify the difference between true and false information sources. How do we teach this to our students? Rheingold explains that literacy is not simply skill development but a combination of skill building and social involvement. Literacy today, he insists, is no longer text based but is a combination of:
- Skill – The ability to read, write and participate in the world of literates
- Tools – Search Engines and web tools that can be trusted for credibility. e.g. Health on the Net
- Social – Your Personal trust network consisting of authorities and experts, e.g. teachers, commentators, information curators you follow online and come to trust as credible sources of information. Connections on Twitter, Google, Facebook and members of your personal learning network.
This video Crap Detection 101 by Howard Rheingold is informative and provides ideas that can easily be transferred into the classroom for the benefit of students. 25 minutes well spent.