Du Bui is a Digital Learning Specialist in the Ogden City School District in Ogden, Utah. As part of his role, he plans professional development and Google Apps for Education trainings for district teachers. Du Bui is always seeking opportunities to expand the district's impact on student learning by using the Applied Digital Skills curriculum.
As a digital skills educator, what is your ultimate goal for your students?
The ultimate goal is to develop digital citizenship. A lot of teachers say that students know how to use technology if they play video games or carry a smartphone. However, familiarity with technology is not the same thing as digital citizenship. To be a digital citizen, you need to use your digital skills safely, responsibly and productively. We want to build digital leaders who will use their digital skills for the benefit of the community.
We want to build digital leaders who will use their digital skills for the benefit of the community.
What’s your favorite lesson in Applied Digital Skills?
I really like Plan and Budget. I used it for a class project based on the following scenario: students graduate from high school with a minimum wage job and they have to create a budget for monthly living expenses. At first, the students were a little intimidated by Google Sheets, but they became enthusiastic pretty quickly. They had fun researching local discounted food prices to plug into their spreadsheet. Learning how to apply their digital skills to something real was exciting for students. More importantly, they learned the value of digital skills for their future educational and professional lives. Some students even decided they wanted to work with digital skills in their future careers.
Any advice for teachers who are teaching Applied Digital Skills for the first time?
Put yourself in the student’s perspective. Before we taught the curriculum, our team completed all the lessons as students. As a student, you can get a better sense for the educational capabilities of Applied Digital Skills.
More importantly, they learned the value of digital skills for their future educational and professional lives.
How do you plan on using the curriculum in the future?
For students in middle school and high school and beyond, we want to combine the Applied Digital Skills curriculum with our own materials in order to prepare them for the G Suite certification. We’d like to offer a year-long program which will award successful participants with the title of Digital Learning Ambassador. Kids who have high interest can also come back as Ambassadors the next summer to help teachers and peers. Students can become digital educators – and good digital citizens – themselves.