About This Project
21Things4Students is an online resource to help students improve their technology proficiency as they prepare for success in the real world. Teachers value 21Things4Students because it's experiential, relevant, applicable and adaptable. Students say they love this class!
The 21Things4Students project, is funded by the REMC Association, and is maintained by two of the original team members from Michigan (Shiawassee RESD, and Ingham ISD). It was created as an educational and online resource to help students improve their technology proficiency as they prepare for success in the 21st century. This project was originally developed to provide districts and classroom teachers with resources to help students meet or exceed the 8th grade technology proficiency requirements in Michigan and currently focuses on helping students build information literacy and digital citizenship skills and be knowledgeable about internet safety and cyberbullying. The development of this resource came at the request of teachers using the 21things4teachers site, that is now known as the 21things4educators.net web site. The Teacher site is currently managed by the Macomb ISD educational technology staff, Dr. Jennifer Parker and Jan Harding. These resources are aligned with the Michigan Technology Competencies for Students (MITECS) and the International Society for Technology in Education (ISTE) standards for students.
Some of the original team members that helped initiate this project:
Front row: Tina Tribu, Kalamazoo RESA, Jan Harding, Macomb ISD, Jennifer Parker-Moore, Ed.D., Macomb ISD
Back row: Kay Hauck, Clare-Gladwin RESD, Carolyn McCarthy, Project Manager, Shiawassee RESD, Melissa White, Project Manager and retired from Ingham ISD
and in memory of Frank Miracola, Macomb ISD
This project has received invaluable help and input from the following educators:
- Members of the REMC Instructional Technology Specialists in Michigan.
- Teacher-educators: Each year between 10-15 educators from around Michigan, that teach with the 21Things4Students, participate in identifying and making annual revision updates.
- Feedback from surveys and classroom visits guide the annual updates and revisions. These changes go live between mid-June through July.
Our team continues to work hard to provide project-based activities that:
1. Address the International Educational Technology Standards for Students (ISTE-S) and the Michigan Integrated Technology Competencies (MITECS). The site has received the ISTE Seal of Alignment for being aligned with the Technology Standards.
No vendors please! Questions, non-working link information, suggestions and ideas are welcomed.
Here are some comments from teachers using the 21t4s in 2020-23 that answered, "What do you like best about 21t4s?"
- Digital Footprint:
Thing 5: Digital Footprint. I looked at this thing because I always cover it a second time briefly at the end of the year before sending students off to summer vacation. When looking at the different quests I thought all were very appropriate for middle school and love that there is a media balance topic. I just did a lesson on this to make students reflect on their time using technology.
I think it is beneficial for students that each thing is laid out the same way. It makes the quests very easy to follow. It has a great variety of videos, games, and activities to keep students engaged. I also noticed that the activities are varied. In Quest 1 alone, students were working on a document and then later making a graph. It is a great example of using technology as a tool so that students are learning different aspects of the tool but around a bigger concept.
- 21things is a great resource to teach how to use technology as the tool it is designed to be. I like the quests to have the students practice the skill that they have learned and a way to track their progress through the different things. Cyber safety and online etiquette are constantly being reinforced throughout.
- I like that this program is a free comprehensive digital literacy curriculum I can immediately start using. I found this resource while searching for ideas on how to start teaching a computer technology class without previous experience.
- 21Things4Students is kept current and the connections/links to standards ISTE, CC and College Readiness are incredible. This is a truly dynamic and spot-on resource !! Thank you so much for your continued dedication and support !
- I love the fact that it goes over basic commands. I have used parts of it previously for high schoolers but am now in middle school so hope to use almost the whole resource .
- The breadth of topics covered and resources curated for student use is impressive.
- The wide variety of tools it exposes students to, information about safe and effective use of online resources
- Providing free resource that promote engaging lessons to support teachers at all comfort levels of using technology in the classroom.
- I like how the teacher's resources . Instead of searching for different locations on the web, all of the information is in a centralized area. It makes it easy to develop your lesson plan.
- That it is aligned with the ISTE Standards.
- Based on my colleague recommendation, I think I'll like everything about it. I was told it's a one-stop shop.
- Interactive activities for students to explore digital literacy skills
- It has great directions in the videos!
- I like how well organized it is and that you are constantly updating it.
- The resources and links provided that align with Computer Science Standards.
- I like that all information and learning is online, works perfectly for our remote learning. I like the combination of videos, assignments, and quizzes.
- It is user friendly and allows students to work at their own pace or be guided as a group.
The International Society of Technology in Education (ISTE) awarded the 21things4students site the ISTE Seal of Alignment for 2019-2020 indicating the site resources meets the technology standards for students.
The ISTE team did a comprehensive review of the 21Things and the Quests.
Their summary conclusion states:
Reviewers concluded that collectively, the 21things4students resource is an impressive resource that provides a comprehensive ladder of skills critical for students to be successful in the digital learning landscape. Students who complete the 21Things curriculum will be in an excellent position to further develop their skills and grow their effective use of technology as a tool for learning."