Obstacle 1: Teachers’ responsibilities for teaching new literacies

Teachers require training about the multi-modal nature of reading, writing, and researching online.

Solution: Students are already seeking information from the internet on their own time. They need to be taught how to seek meaning across a wide range of media such as text, video, images, sound and oftentimes they encounter all of this media in a very short time. This requires teaching students how to decipher relevant from irrelevant information and how to use reputable sources of information on the web. Once they have found all the information they need then it is important to teach them how to organize it with tools like diigo.

Obstacle 2: The debate about the importance of teaching cursive vs. keyboarding

Common Core standards in grades 3 on have specifically written objectives around using the keyboard to complete written work. Some argue for dedicated time to teach the QWERTY keyboard and others argue that it is a waste of time.

Those in favor of cursive writing feel that it is valuable because it allows children to develop fine motor skills and knowledge of cursive allows them to read historical documents.

Solution: There are so many embedded benefits of learning to word process: built in editing tools, spelling and grammar resources, peer and teacher ease of sharing feedback throughout the writing process, and sharing writing with a more authentic audience which can improve the initial motivation to write.

Obstacle 3: Challenges relating to working with diverse learners

Many English Language Learners and students in Special Education have obstacles with writing.

Solution: Word Processing provides such students with access to better word choice through the online thesaurus or dictionary. As mentioned above, they also benefit from the computer making suggested edits along the way. Voice to text is getting better and better and this is providing a huge benefit to those who are able to verbalize their thoughts, but the thoughts get jumbled in the process of moving from brain to paper.


Roblyer, M. (2016). Integrating Educational Technology into Teaching (7th ed.).     Massachusetts: Pearson.