#SOL15: Day 22, Digital Learning Reaching for Authenticity

This post serves a dual purpose: my 22nd post in the Slice of Life Story Challenge and a link up to Margaret Simon’s Reflections of the Techie DigLit Sunday.


Last Sunday, Margaret wrote about the Authenticity Test. This “test” hit home with me.

This test includes two major priorities:

1. Is the activity used outside of school?


2. Is it a literate habit of experienced adults?

Just this week I feel like my students are close to passing these tests.


Blogging has lit up writing for my students. It’s real, alive. They love reading other blogs and getting comments. Just like us.

They get feedback from people who matter to them, their peers. Just like us.

But, blogging includes frustrations and problems. Just like us.

I can’t connect.

It’s slow.

It’s glicthy.

I can’t save.

I can’t find…

With 30 students, I can’t possibly solve their problems.. And that’s a good thing.

Blogging offers the opportunity to learn by doing. There are boundaries and expectations, but students want to get the post up. They want to upload the picture. They want to learn how to use the spelling tools.  My job is coach and cheerleader.  Their job is to try and try and try again until they get it.  Digital learning in the classroom allows students to figure out how to do things. Just like us.


I’ve borrowed iPads from another classroom.

I hear, “I can’t find my google doc on this iPad Mrs. Harmatz!”

“Use Safari and Google it,” I tell her and I walk away.

I come back five minutes later; she’s working on her doc.

Literacy skill and agency all courtesy of digital learning.

And finally, students are working outside of the classroom. On their own.

Check out  Zoe’s post. It popped up one night.

The next day, “Did you see my post? And it wasn’t easy, Mrs. Harmatz. I wrote it and then lost part of it, and I had to re-write it.” Just like us.