The Entertainment Software Association and EverFi have launched the Digital Living Project, a new initiative which will provide an instructional platform at no cost to taxpayers or the school districts in which they are used. The program is currently in use at 20 schools in the Los Angeles area, including Westchester Enriched Sciences Magnet High School and will be expanding in to more schools in 2013.
The Digital Living Project is a new, interactive learning platform which was developed by EverFi, a leader in education technology and combines instructional design with rich media simulations and gaming. The curriculum, which is for students in the 8th and 9th grades lasts 4 hours and is in line with standards developed by the International Society for Technology in Education and the state of Calofirnia.
The program covers topics such as privacy, security, cyberbullying, digital relationships and digital footprints and focuses on building skills in the digital arena such as creating blogs and being responsible with social media. Helping students understand the power of technology exposes them to potential careers in the digital field.
Here’s what California Attorney general Kamala D. Harris has to say:
“Guidance around safe and responsible online behavior should be a core part of the curriculum in all schools. Education can help considerably in preventing and dealing with the consequences of cyberbullying and online harassment. I hope we can all affirm that, while the Internet has changed how we interact, it has not fundamentally changed how we should treat one another.”
And Erik Huey, senior vice president at ESA added:
“Numerous independent studies show that game play has positive impacts on social awareness, creative thinking, and classroom learning. By partnering with EverFi, we are using digital learning and gaming to empower students across Los Angeles with the skill set to understand the nuts and bolts of how technology works and leverage these tools safely and effectively.”
While computer learning is not a new thing in schools, adding programs which allow the students to learn about the digital frontier is a new concept and will hopefully lead to more understanding of that frontier by America’s youth. With those new found tools under their belts, those youths will have a much better chance of being able to use the internet and digital information mediums as valuable weapons in the fight for personal and community growth.