Introduction of Digital Leaders in English Primary13 January 2016
The use of Digital Leaders in primary schools is a fairly recent phenomenon. In an ever changing technological environment it is the concept of harnessing the skills of students with a passion for technology. I was inspired at the Apple Institute last summer to start this new initiative within the English Primary section at IIL.
The application process consisted of 3 elements:
A written application form where I was looking for what motivated the students to apply for the position including their technological interests, which was followed by a timed iPad task, the pressure was on for the students to demonstrate their iPad skills in just 25 minutes with a specific brief to fulfill. Finally a short interview where shortlisted students had the opportunity to sell themselves. Out of 36 applicants I selected 9 Digital Leaders from Year 6!
Why Digital Leaders?
Digital Leaders bring a fresh, pupil-centred perspective to ICT. Being a Digital Leader and having an official role with a badge instills the students with a sense of responsibility. The Digital Leaders are responsible for carrying out specific jobs on a regular basis including; writing for Inkblot, organising and running of a weekly ICT Club and also supporting fellow students and teachers. They will also have opportunities to test new innovations at IIL.
How does the employment of Digital Leaders relate to the IIL White Paper on ICTE?
Action: The Digital Leaders have, are, and will continue to assist in the integration of new practices in English Primary.“The use of ICTE is necessary to give students as well as teachers the means to conceive and drive these changes”.
Skills: The students are already familiar and confident with their devices and generally have an excellent skill base by the time they reach Year 6. Being a Digital Leader opens up opportunities for “development of new competencies”.