Written Statement – Learning in Digital Wales

Chair of WHELF, Andrew Green, was a member of the Task and Finish Group which published its report entitled Find it, Make it, Use it, Share it – Learning in Digital Wales on 29 March 2012.

The Minister has considered the wide ranging recommendations in this report and has agreed an action plan for the use of digital technology to improve performance in schools.

He is establishing a National Digital Learning Council to provide expert and strategic guidance on the use of digital technology in teaching and learning in Wales.

In December 2012 he will be launching a new bilingual learning platform for Wales, for which the working title is Hwb.

National Digital Collection – Hwb will provide the online home for a national digital repository of teaching and learning resources.  This will include the thousands of curriculum and good practice resources which have previously been developed for our teachers’ website NGfL Cymru, which will be migrated to Hwb in December.

Hwb will host resources which can be used on a variety of platforms.  One element of Hwb, however, will be the use of the free iTunes University platform (iTunes U) in order to showcase the best educational resources and activities in Wales.

Hwb will also provide access to the wide range of free educational tools and resources which have been developed through the Microsoft Partners in Learning initiative.

Professional Development: Digital Technology and Computing
Establishing a team of Digital Leaders which will be drawn from the best practitioners using digital technology in Wales.

A Culture of Digital Citizenship
The world wide web provides a tremendous learning resource for children and young people.  As well as access to a vast range of information and educational tools, it provides an opportunity for learners across the world to share their own ideas, experience and creativity with one another.  We need to help learners develop the skills, confidence and maturity to navigate this new world and make good use of the opportunities it provides.  Most importantly, we also want to ensure that our children are safe online.

The new digital learning programme for Wales will, however, take a new approach to the use of social networking technologies in education.  Through this programme, and through Hwb, we will be encouraging schools to make full use of social technologies in order to engage learners and improve learning outcomes.


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