"How will you incorporate information literacy skills, such as evaluating and comparing the quality of sources, effective and efficient searching for information, and issues of copyright and plagiarism into your teaching?"
This is the question I recently posed to several candidates applying for a teaching position at my school. Some of the candidates followed with, "Are you asking me how I will use technology?" I realized through this interchange that I wasn't really asking about technology, I was asking about information. Yes, technology is changing rapidly. Yes, there are millions of interesting Websites and Web 2.0 tools out there. But what I really want to know is, how you will teach your students to navigate the massive ocean of information in an intelligent, efficient and ethical way.
David Warlick refers to this as learning literacy. He describes it as " — the skills to resourcefully use your information environment to help yourself learn what you need to know, to do what you need to do." So it isn't really about the technology, it's about what you do with it. We need to teach our students to think critically about information. This is not new to teachers. Good teachers have been doing this all along. There is just a lot more information out there to wade through.
On a side note - not one of the candidates had read any of my blog entries. My blog is linked to the front page of our school Website. It isn't hard to find. (I thank my principal for allowing it to be so prominent on the page -Thank you David if you are reading this). So narcissistic me thinks that maybe one of the candidates will walk in the room and say "Oh I read your blog..." Not one of them did. I'm not sure what that says - and if you are out there reading this please leave a comment and prove me wrong - but I have to say I was a little disappointed.