A Day Without Computer Literacy

1406 Words 6 Pages
It was the year 2003, and I was in first grade. We were in the computer lab for a class assignment. Most of the kids seemed fluent with the computers and their usage, promptly navigating to the google.com home page (yes, it existed back then) and searching for “ligers.” While I, on the other hand, was unable to even navigate to the internet browser. It was the first time I had any formal experience with any sort of computer. I felt utterly lost. Unlike the other students in my class, I had no computer literacy whatsoever. This lack of computer literacy can be attributed to my family background. My parents, being war immigrants, emigrated from our home country of Afghanistan, where technology (and literacy) wasn 't commonplace. As a result, …show more content…
I was fundamentally different from my peers. I did not have computer access readily available at my home. The other students all grew up with computers, and used them as if they were second-nature. It was then that my teacher noticed how confused I was, blankly staring at the computer screen. She came over and told me to hover the mouse over the blue “E” icon and double-click. I had opened an internet browser for the first time. She then pointed at the url bar to me, and prompted me to type the address to an educational games website. I was ecstatic. In a mere 30 seconds I went from completely clueless to being able to navigate a web browser. It was this first immersion with technology that I was exposed to that would pave the way for great things in the future. As such, it is important for school districts to require teaching students computer literacy at an early age, as there are students who come from a computer-illiterate background; exposing students to computer literacies at an early age will open doors to new opportunities for them throughout their lives, in areas such as academics, employment, and access to …show more content…
I had assumed that the class would teach students how to operate the computer. Within the first week of class, I found out how wrong I was. The class taught students how to perform tasks such as store information and format documents and work with various office/productivity programs. Knowledge of working with computers was apparently a prerequisite. With my limited knowledge with computers, I initially struggled in that class. Knowledge of computers was a requirement, however, there was never a class I had come across that actually taught students how to use computers. It was as if computer literacy was treated as just something people passively acquired somewhere. Obviously, this wasn 't the case. Students who grew up with technologically-savvy parents acquired the literacy needed to succeed in this class from a young age. I had no such early access to computers at home, and my school access was limited as well (computer usage was something that was done every now and then in elementary school, not on a daily basis). My grades in that class were initially unsatisfactory. However, as the weeks went by, I began asking my classmates next to me for help on the assignments. To them, it seemed almost unusual that I had little knowledge with computers, but they helped me nonetheless. By the end of the quarter, I had managed to pass the class, despite lagging severely behind the other students to begin with. If

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