Digital Literacy/Blended Learning
In today’s uncertain political and economic landscape, it is especially critical to expand opportunities for immigrant communities to include digital access and skills. Without knowing how to access a smartphone, tablet or computer, immigrant workers are at disadvantage to find information, socially integrate, and fully participate in their community. To address this need, BSP has piloted and incorporated blended learning models with classroom instruction to adult learners. Blended learning combines online digital media instruction with traditional classroom methods. BSP leverages digital integration by pairing tablet and smartphone training into the following programs:
- Mobile Up/BSP on the Go – BSP’s first mobile-based course training 100 workers statewide on Vocational and Life Skills English through their cellphones. Visit the official Mobile Up site for more information.
- ADVANCE Vocational Vocational English Training
- English as a Second Language
- Civic Engagement
- Customized Training
As part of BSP’s Digital Literacy program, BSP provides basic Computer skill instruction to janitors and other low-wage workers to learn essential technological skills, and most importantly, keep up with today’s high-tech economy. Classes are offered in three-month, 24-hour course blocks, and are taught by experienced teachers provided by our partnerships with the local community colleges in computer labs housed within the SEIU-USWW offices of Los Angeles, Orange County, Sacramento, San Jose, and Oakland. Through participation in the course, students are taught the basic functions of a computer as well as how to navigate the Internet, create an e-mail account, type, and use word-processing software.
*Instructor Training: BSP has developed a Tablet Integration Plan to help instructors effectively integrate tablets in their classroom to promote English and digital literacy, and provides biannual professional development events.
Through its Digital Literacy and Blended Learning program, BSP provides workers essential skills for work and life in a 21st century, highly digital society.
For more information, download our Digital Literacy handout.
Learning Beyond the Walls of the Classroom
BSP has incorporated digital media and technology to deliver its English language and Citizenship training in Oakland. Students used their smartphone to download a USCIS app providing useful information on the application for naturalization (N-400) and material to study for their Naturalization exam.
Magda Calderon is one of these students. Originally from Guatemala, Magda works as a janitor at The Clorox Company with ABM in downtown Oakland. After 12 years of living in the United States, Magda is eager to achieve her dream of becoming a naturalized citizen. Magda joined BSP’s Citizenship classes in Oakland, helping her walk towards naturalization and improve upon her English skills. Magda believes the Hybrid class was especially helpful, since she could bring the app and tools she learned to study with her children at home. “I did not know how to take photos with a smartphone, or download an application. They put the USCIS Study Tools application on their smartphone, and now I can learn the questions and study for the citizenship exam at home.” Magda’s English has improved tremendously. She now speaks with the English speaking clients at her work which gives her confidence. Magda hopes to become fluent in English, seeing the benefits it will bring her in her daily communication with her community at home and at her worksite. BSP is grateful for the support of the San Francisco Foundation to bridge the basic skills gap and improve the quality of life for janitors in Silicon Valley. With the support of the San Francisco Foundation Equity Grant Program, BSP will continue to expand career advancement opportunities and strengthen regional collaborations for low-wage immigrant workers.