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Next Literacies for Next Generations

Participate and share

Participate and share : Interactive lecture

Friday, December 4, 12:15–1:00 pm PST (Pacific Standard Time)

Shannon Miller  
Mark Ray  

What literacies will help Generations Z and Alpha thrive in the future? Alongside digital literacies in the ISTE Standards for Students, let’s examine others including emotional, civic and environmental literacies. Learn how to empower resilient learners who can navigate both their immediate and post-graduate futures.

Audience: Coaches, Teachers, Library media specialists
Skill level: Beginner
Attendee devices: Devices required
Attendee device specification: Smartphone: Windows, Android, iOS
Laptop: Chromebook, Mac, PC
Tablet: Android, iOS, Windows
Participant accounts, software and other materials: Any Internet browser will work either on a phone or other networked device.
Topic: Instructional design & delivery
Grade level: PK-12
ISTE Standards: For Students:
Global Collaborator
  • Students explore local and global issues and use collaborative technologies to work with others to investigate solutions.
Knowledge Constructor
  • Students build knowledge by actively exploring real-world issues and problems, developing ideas and theories and pursuing answers and solutions.
For Educators:
  • Create experiences for learners to make positive, socially responsible contributions and exhibit empathetic behavior online that build relationships and community.
Additional detail: ISTE author presentation

Proposal summary

Purpose & objective

The ISTE Standards for Students provide a clear focus for digital literacies. And there remains a need to identify, explore, and teach other literacies which will be essential to future ready learners. Both traditional literacies (reading, mathematics) and non-traditional literacies (social/emotional, civic, and environmental) will be required for the success of future ready learners. That said, current generations of students, typically defined as Generation Z and Gen Alpha have been shown to have different social and digital profiles than those of Millennials. Put together, there is a need to examine ‘future ready literacies’ in order to effectively prepare current and future generations for success both in the pandemic era and beyond. The content of the presentation will focus on four questions: Who are these students? What do these students need? What can educators provide? And who’s going to do it?

Participants will begin by briefly examining differences between current generations and Millennials to tease out current and emerging learning needs and outcomes. Then, existing standards that support future ready literacies will be identified (ISTE, Future Ready, AASL, etc.) Finally, leveraging a Padlet created at ISTE 2019 and continued explorations of future ready literacies at the Future Ready Institutes during the 2019-20 school year, participants will select a ‘literacy family’ (ex. information literacy, cultural literacy) and work with other educators to define essential skills and habits of mind. Participants will contribute to virtual documents to further define the literacy and identify ways to connect these to existing or future instruction and leadership. Educators will leave with access to the shared digital assets, tools or solutions group-sourced to date, and a simple logic model-based action plan.


10 min - active participation activity on 'My Generation' and what I learned in school (presenter introduction included)
10 min - presentation and digital sharing on current generations and their needs
5 min - sharing and review of existing standards and frameworks supporting future ready literacies
20 min - introduction of literacy families and breakout choice group activity
10 min - sharing and highlights from attendees
5 min - closure and resources for next steps

Supporting research

Initial Padlet from ISTE 2019 identifying potential future ready literacy families:

Future Ready Librarians website:

ISTE/Washington State Digital Learning Standards podcasts:

More [+]


Mark Ray, Amalgamated Futures

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