Date:12th July 2021
Venue: University of Wolverhampton, via Zoom
A virtual UK Conference titled ‘More than just Algorithms: Exploring the Future of Digital Literacy in the Classroom’ was held online via Zoom on July 12th 2021. During the first half of the event the University of Wolverhampton project team discussed the results of the MeLDE research and project structure, the introduction to the free online resources for teachers and the MeLDE eLearning platform. There was also an opportunity for participants to sign up to the platform and enrol on courses. Guest speaker Professor Diana Bannister MBE, Director of the Institute of Education and Associate Dean in the Faculty of Education, Health and Well-Being at the University of Wolverhampton, talked about Digital Pedagogy, linking this to various aspects of the MeLDE project. External guest speaker Nicolette Smallshaw, Head of Education with First News, a weekly newspaper for children read by over 2 million 7 to 14-year-olds in UK schools each week, discussed the importance of reliable online content/ news for students and pupils and linked this to the development of critical thinking skills.
The event ended with ‘break-out room’ discussions around technology in teaching and learning, using Padlet software for participants to record views. All participants shared the results of the break-out discussions in a networking session at the end of the Conference with MeLDE partner organisations sharing their experiences of the use of technology during Covid lockdowns and giving an insight to the experiences of teachers and students across the EU during the pandemic.
Feedback showed the reasons for participants to attend the event were: to find out more about digital pedagogy; to find out more about the MeLDE project and to network with the guest speakers. The key takeaways points from the event were: different perspective of use of technology in different European counties and a good understanding of advance technology. Participants also stated that the most useful part of the event were: the tools that were shown and the use of the various platforms for student engagement. Additional comments were stated such as: “Excellent event”, “a lot to cover within the short amount of time”, “very informative and got understanding of digital platform” and “would have preferred to have the event in person.”