e L e a r n i n P a p e r s
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From the feld
During the campaign the banner was clicked by 2281 childrenand young people, out of those 1211 registered and provided
personal informaon, most of them e-mail addresses andphone numbers, but 36, as their contact informaon, providedtheir home address. The banner included informaon that the
campaign is organised by Safer Internet Centre, and if the site
of Safer Internet Centre was entered the informaon could be
found that a fake campaign is being organised and one shouldnot register.
As predicted, the results of this experiment proved that crical
digital literacy skills are not the best developed skills amongstchildren and young people.
This is also proved by results of a study conducted by the Lat
vian Language Agency of the Ministry of Educaon and Sciencein Latvia on Media Competence of Schoolchildren and Teachers
, focusing on forms, frequency, aims and ways of mediaused by both – teachers and schoolchildren – in the process of
educaon.Main conclusions showed that dierent types of media (inter
net, TV, radio, printed press) are used daily and the most im
-portant media used, to no one’s surprise, is internet – 91% of
teachers and 86% of children use it daily. The dierence starts
with aims – while teachers claim that in cases when more than
3 hours are spent online it is for work/ professional purposes
and for personal usage internet is not being used more than anhour a day; children for study purposes mostly spend no morethan 1 hour a day, and if longer period is spent online – it is for
personal interests. This shows that for teachers internet is a me
dium for searching informaon and work while for children it isa medium for interacon and communicaon.This leads to the second big dierence in signicance of mediain the process of educaon – percepon of how important it is
to use media to perform well at school. Only 15% of teacherssay that use of media is not needed to perform well while 58%
of children think that usage of media will not aect their perfor
mance at school. This shows the situaon in schools in Latvia – if it is not wrien in the study book, it will not be asked in the testor exam, so I do not need to know it! These results also showthe gap between the teacher’s atude about the media usage
2 Study of Latvian Language Agency is accessuble here (in Latvian):
in the process of educaon and the actual usage. As main rea
-sons lack of technical equipment in classrooms and at children’sliving places are named, however we would like suggest thatsuch factors as lack of methodological guidance on how to use
media crically and safely are more signicant.
Fortunately only 10% of teachers think that media usage is notappropriate or possible in the subject they teach and hopefully
future researches will only show decrease in this number. Teach
ers acknowledge that crical digital literacy skills are needed and
that school is the place to provide children with this knowledge,
meanme results show that 51% of teachers acknowledge thatit is dicult or very dicult to show and teach children how toevaluate media content crically and check if the informaon istrue or false and the source is trusul.
From our visits to schools, when organising seminars, we seethat knowledge about basic internet safety issues from the per-
sonnel in schools is oen missing – the content lters in schools
are used rarely, teachers, when giving assignments on infor-
maon search, are not using safe search opons and internetbrowsing history is not being deleted aer every user. If teach
-ers had their own experience and knowledge of what kind of
informaon children just might come across and what threats toencounter online, lack of above menoned basic safety issues
would not be there.
We see that the problem is there and to try to nd a possiblesoluon and come up with actual suggesons on how to inte
grate crical digital literacy skills in the system of educaon inLatvia as a part of Safer Internet Day Celebraon in Latvia we
organised a Conference “Discovering the digital world togeth-er... safely!” It brought together youngsters, parents, teachers
and experts from industry and universies to discuss the lackof usage of modern technologies in the educaonal process inLatvian schools and discuss the absence of crical digital literacy
and media competence skills amongst children and teachers.
The main conclusion of the discussions of the conference wasthat in the current system of Educaon in Latvia needs to bechanged. Media educaon and development of crical digitalliteracy skills should become a part of the educaonal process
as we are living in the society driven by technologies and infor-
Some of the conclusions coming from the Conference expertsinclude: