Digitization will become more widespread in the future. In a world where digitalization is advancing, it is important to have an education method for digitalization. What kind of education does Denmark, which is the most advanced, offer? I would like to take a look.
"Digitally advanced country" Denmark's ICT education, three keywords: What is the role of parents?
In Denmark, which won first place in the world e-government ranking in 2020 and digitization is pervasive in the field of education, ICT skills will be acquired while using PCs and iPads in classes from around the third grade of elementary school. How are ICT devices used locally and are affecting children? We talked to an expert familiar with ICT education in Denmark.
The person who heard the story
Scandinavian Institute Representative
(Yasuoka / Mika) Associate Professor at Roskilde University, Denmark. She is the representative of the Nordic Institute. She has a master's degree in informatics from Kyoto University and a major in advanced interdisciplinary engineering from the University of Tokyo, and obtained a doctorate from IT University of Copenhagen in 2009. She worked at the Technical University of Denmark Research Associates before assuming her current position. She is also the mother of a second grade son and a sixth grade daughter.
Why ICT education is essential in Denmark
――In a word, "ICT education", how is ICT incorporated into learning in Denmark?
In Denmark, ICT education is widespread with the three keywords of "communication," "tools," and "materials."
Communicate between teachers and children, teachers and parents, and schools and parents using a digital platform. Since her daughter had been digital since she was in kindergarten, she was also communicating on the app about sick leave and reports from her teacher.
Basic functions, operations, and mechanisms of ICT devices such as tablets and PCs, information collection using ICT devices, creation of presentation materials, privacy protection using IDs and passwords, etc. are necessary for living. We aim to improve ICT skills.
After learning the basic operations of ICT equipment, you will learn using the online learning platform "Khan Academy" and Danish original digital materials (writing and listening drills). ICT education as a material is expanding the possibilities of learning, such as deepening comprehension compared to learning only with paper textbooks by learning from various angles with video and audio in addition to textbooks.
Screen of online learning platform "Khan Academy"
In Denmark, there is a background that the e-government has started in earnest since around 2010, and ICT education has become widespread accordingly. My daughter attends a private elementary school in Copenhagen, but she was instructed by elementary school 3 to bring her home computer and iPad to school. If it is difficult to prepare at home, the school may lend a computer or iPad, and it seems that it is generally rented at public schools.
In addition, communications from the government and government must be received by e-mail from the age of 15, and "I could not receive it because I cannot use ICT equipment" is not the reason. In order to live smoothly in this country, it is essential to acquire ICT skills.
――Mr. Yasuoka, what kind of benefits do you feel when you see your child who is exposed to ICT education?
In the coming era, the ability to search for evidence information and discuss based on it will be required. I think it is a great merit to be able to learn through compulsory education through group work using ICT equipment. Textbooks only introduce one finding. If you go out into society and work with people of different nationalities, you will not be able to compete with the knowledge in the textbook.
5th grade girls in group work
In addition, since it is possible to visualize the progress of children's learning and their strengths / weaknesses, it is also good that individualized education is easy. Originally, Denmark tended to respect individuals more than groups, and personalized educational styles were well established. I feel that it has been strengthened.
The disadvantages of ICT will be resolved by "discussion" rather than restrictions.
――On the other hand, there are some disadvantages of ICT education.
Since I've become able to master ICT equipment from an early age, I'm worried that I might come into contact with violent content and sexual materials that could adversely affect the growth of my child. In some cases, you may be bullied on SNS or become addicted to the internet.
In Denmark, digital issues such as "children's screen time" and "children's use of social media" that report the usage time of apps are occasionally taken up in the media and are controversial.
――What are you doing to solve the disadvantages?
From time to time, you will receive ICT-related alerts from the school, such as online bullying and contacts from strangers on social media. At my home, I often talk about how to use ICT equipment based on the contact from the school. In addition, at school, lectures such as "How to use SNS" are held several times a year for parents and children.
――In Japan, parents sometimes limit dangerous information from being seen. Will such tools be used?
We don't have any restrictions, but sometimes we ask her daughter to check, "Show me what you've looked up." Some people have a parental control (*) app, but even if you limit it, some children will acquire the skill to bypass the limit after a certain age, which is fundamental. I don't think it's a solution.
That is why in Denmark, I feel that there is a strong tendency to discuss and make people think about the correct way to use it, rather than strictly restricting and suppressing it. For example, I myself discuss ICT with children, such as watching Netflix's "The Light and Shadow Brought by the Social Dilemma of Surveillance", which depicts the darkness of SNS, with children and making them think while discussing. I am consciously taking time to do it.
* An initiative in which parents monitor and limit the use of information and communication devices such as personal computers and mobile phones by children.
I want you to build a sufficient relationship of trust between parents and children before touching ICT.
――How does your child interact with ICT equipment and SNS at home?
My son, who is in the second grade of elementary school, does not have his own ICT equipment and does not do SNS because ICT education has not started at school yet. Screen time including TV is limited to 1 hour per day.
Her daughter has her own personal computer, iPad, and iPhone, which she sometimes uses at her home. There is no time limit, but I spend 1-2 hours doing my homework every day and about 1 hour for private enjoyment.
Although I try not to actively do SNS, I only use WhatsApp and Instagram for communication. At the request of my daughter, I talked to the mothers of the girls I got along with at school and allowed them to be only in a group of friends.
I'm worried, but I can't go back to the world without ICT anymore, so I think it's better to talk with the child and the school to decide the range of use and go out with them. I think it's difficult to pick 100% of dangerous buds, so I'd like to make a decision while worrying about the growth of the child.
--Have you ever been confused when raising children in Denmark?
Arithmetic class at a public school in Copenhagen
In the first place, Japan and Denmark have completely different national scales and ICT progress, so it is natural that their educational styles are also different. With that in mind, ICT education in this country teaches that the ground has set foot, and I feel that it is appropriate.
If I had been raising children in Japan, I think I would have had another problem. In the case of Japanese children, rather than learning, they are exposed to ICT a lot through entertainment such as You Tube and online games. The usage time may become enormous without knowing it, and that may be an issue for Japanese children.
--Are there any things that Japanese parents can do at home regarding ICT education?
I think that if we can set the minimum restrictions and let the children take the initiative while discussing as necessary, it will lead to the improvement of children's ICT skills. For that purpose, it is most important to have a relationship that allows you to communicate well with your child. Because I myself have the trust of my parents and children, I feel that I can challenge things that seem a little dangerous.
When people say, "That's no good, this is no good," you'll want to do it, and you may actually be touching various things without your parents knowing. In that case, it may be ideal to let them do it openly and have them understand the correct usage while discussing with parents and children.