Teaching My Students About Digital Literacy in Math Class!

June 10, 2021 0 By Gledi Toci

Fake news is everywhere! It can be found in documents, articles, ads, and much more. This is where digital literacy becomes important. Digital literacy is the ability to evaluate information and its credibility. Checking the credibility of information takes an individual’s ability to look at grammar, images, and fact-checking. The false information presented to us through all different types of social media is becoming harder and harder to spot. This is due to bot accounts seeming more legitimate, leading to many scams and spreading wrong information

As future math and physical education teacher, I will be trying to teach about digital literacy with respect to the curriculum. Teaching my future students that everything on the internet might not be real is extremely important, especially for physical education. Outcomes such as PE20.8 and PE20.9 mostly focus on nutrition and the advantages of being physically active for the body. Therefore, with many students being on social media, many health misconceptions are shared. When teaching about nutrition and using proper reliable websites, I will be teaching my students digital literacy. As stated by the NCTE students need to learn the harm of false information. Especially when this information affects your body and health. Many foods are classified as unhealthy along with many misconceptions about health through social media. Including information on what it takes to lose or gain weight, and I want to make sure my students do not get affected the same way I was.

I will be teaching Clair Wardle idea of 7 Types of Mis- and Disinformation

  • Satire or Parody
  • Misleading Content
  • Imposter Content
  • Fabricated Content
  • False Connection
  • False Context
  • Manipulated Content

In my math classes, especially non-calculus classes I will be attempting to teach digital literacy. With outcomes such as WA10.11 in workplace and apprenticeship mathematics 10. This outcome’s focus is developing an understanding of things such as net worth, self-employment, wages, and net pay. These are also all topics that are often brought up on social media, often with false information. Similar to physical education, I will be teaching how to not get mislead by such topics online. As Alec and Katia talk about in their article, false news is everywhere to create revenue and web traffic. Therefore we as teachers and our students will often come across false news but have to teach the proper skills on catching the fake news no matter the subject.

Question is how do we teach our students to spot fake news?

  • Show and teach students about information verification checkers (ex: FactsCan or Snopes etc..).
  • Teach students about media bias
  • Bring fake news examples in classrooms to demonstrate and teach
  • Examine bots, catfishes, and scammers and why they exist

These skills are essential to be taught in the classroom, which I will be including in my teaching. Helping on preventing my students from gathering wrong information about their body/health and economy/jobs.