Tag Archives: attribution

Digital Citizenship in our Brave New (Digital) World

In this brave new digital world we live in, I believe it is everyone’s job to both teach and learn about digital citizenship (parents, teachers, and students themselves).   It’s the when and where this teaching and learning is taking place that can be challenging, and I’m not sure it is being taken seriously.  Many educators aren’t even really aware or convinced themselves that digital citizenship is something worth teaching…or if they do, they have trouble finding the “time and space for it in the curriculum.”  (I myself looked at a lot of the links and resources for this course and initially determined they weren’t appropriate or applicable for my young students.) While some of the articles What Are Teens Doing Online? are definitely geared to high school teachers, parents or teens themselves, it doesn’t mean that digital citizenship instruction in the early years isn’t important….it just looks different.

It might begin by learning about the proper way to take care of the devices in the classroom, as suggested by this Common Sense Media Poster:

Common Sense Media's Device Care Poster

Common Sense Media’s Device Care Poster

We made a class book using My Story and took pictures showing the dos and don’ts when using the ipads, which we later shared on our blog.  

Wrong: Wrestling over the ipad. Photo Credit: Jocelyn  Sutherland

Wrong: Wrestling over the ipad.
Photo Credit: Jocelyn Sutherland

Right: Sharing the ipad Photo Credit: Jocelyn Sutherland

Right: Sharing the ipad
Photo Credit: Jocelyn Sutherland

 

 

 

 

 

 

One aspect of “device care” I hadn’t anticipated in that first lesson but became an issue months later was one clever 5 year old student visiting the App Store and indiscriminately downloaded games,  filling up storage and cluttering the ipad home page.  I had to explain that we always ask before downloading anything and immediately changed the security settings.

Another thing I have noticed is Digital Literacy/Citizenship instruction often not as integrated as we might like–currently grade 3 at my current school completes a unit about Digital Citizenship.  Early Years collaborated with grade 3 on that unit by becoming blogging buddies.  We practiced and refined our digital citizenship skills by sharing our blogs and by partnering up and making productive and positive comments.  However, once the unit is over, it can be difficult for teachers to make the time to continue these good practices.

 

Practicing Digital Citizenship skills through commenting. Screen Shot of our class blog.

Practicing Digital Citizenship skills through commenting.
Screen Shot of our class blog.

 

Earlier this year, after being inspired by the Common Sense Media resources shared in a PD session, I worked with my tech coach to deliver an online safety lesson.  We used the lesson, Going Places Safely lesson. It likened the idea of visiting places online to visiting places in real life and making safe choices in both.  The students enjoyed the “Virtual Field Trips” to places like MoMA or the San Diego Zoo.  We extended the lesson by broadening the boundaries of our travels:  some of the students began exploring Google Earth.  We first  looked up our campus –to everyone’s delight–and then went all over the world.

Although there were a lot more  great lessons, I stopped here, at this point in time figuring my students were still too young to really need to go deeper.  I knew in class they mostly used a small range of apps, and didn’t typically go looking for things on the internet…Well, now I know they do manage to find their way…kids will click anything, and some apps can easily lead away to Youtube videos of thinly disguised ads aimed at young children, which then offer a whole slew of other suggested videos that turn our otherwise Creation App filled iPads into TV screens.  And just because at school my 4 year olds are not (typically) surfing the net, doesn’t mean it they aren’t doing this at home or elsewhere.  This brings us back the question of whose job is it to teach digital citizenship?

I’d like to look at Common Sense Media’s My Creative Work lesson more closely with my students.  I currently encourage them to write/type their names on their artistic contributions, where possible, but we are not yet writing the date, but we do love stamping it!  

An oldie, but a goodie

An oldie, but a goodie

Recently, I have started asking the students to name their Artistic pieces, in particular the photographs we are taking as part of our Photography Exploration.  I will be honest and say I hadn’t really considered that the process of doing this is not simply a record keeping task, but a digital citizenship task–making it easier for others to reference your work.  This is something I will begin to work on with my students and remember to do myself when sharing and posting my own photos.  

I must remember to credit my own work, if only to make it easy for others to credit me later.

One area of digital citizenship we are addressing in my class is what sorts of things should we be posting to our blog? I currently have it set up that students do not need teacher approval, that what they choose to post goes directly to the blog.  I know many teachers would shudder at this, but with my small group of students, this is manageable, and after a few hiccups at the beginning of the year with students posting silly Puppet Pals videos of themselves mostly screaming, I haven’t had to delete many posts.  They seem to understand what is a quality post and (for an Early Years student) worthy of sharing.  

I deleted my own personal version of this picture.  Context goes a long way.

I deleted my own personal version of this picture. Context goes a long way.

(There was one panic inducing moment when one of the students snapped a picture of me,  wearing a black cape and role playing the evil stepmom from a fairy tale and immediately posted it to the blog, despite my protests. When I looked at the picture, without any context, it was unflattering and looked though I were imitating a Muslim woman praying…It goes without saying I immediately deleted the post and we had a long class discussion about asking people’s permission before posting a picture of them.  Although, now that I think about it, I didn’t really address this with my students at the beginning of the year, and don’t typically ask their permission to post pictures of them, now, either. Not a simple discussion.) 

There are many aspects of Digital Citizenship to consider and figure out, and I anticipate a huge learning curve as I move to the role of Ed Tech Coach next year, while at the same time moving to digital portfolios as a school. There is no time like the present to just jump in!

Getting “ahead” Legally

Living in Switzerland, and being on “ski” break this week I have had a lot of extra time to read and hopefully get “ahead” in the course.  I have been using my time to read a lot of blogs, leave comments on a few, save links and quotes for future blog posts.  My mind is literally spinning with ideas and my current trouble is narrowing down a focus for this week’s post and reflection.  Since I had too many ideas and a limited word count working against me, I am taking Ben’s advice and am splitting up the post I originally started.

Too many ideas, limited word count...

Too many ideas, limited word count…

My first error in thinking I could quickly “get ahead” on posts was assuming I could churn out several reflective posts in a day or two. I can do a lot of “consuming” of information in that time, but the harder part–the sorting, categorising, and consolidating aspect of reflection simply takes time.  I need time to reflect on all the new ideas.  I need time to seek out more information to see what I can find to further support and extend my new line of thinking.

 

noun_299608_cc

Me, being driven crazy by plug ins, widgets and posting to pages

My second error was assuming the “tinkering and playing around with my blog” would not be the time suck that Jeff promised it would.  I am being driven crazy by seemingly simple things (the digital equivalent of putting a paper in a folder, or in other words, adding my posts to a Page) that I haven’t yet figured out how to do simply–without altering code on a plug in (??? all Greek to me) as some tutorial I googled suggested- and wondering how to tap into my PLN for answers.   Of course, the more time it takes to tinker with the appearance, the more stressed I become that I am running out of time to focus on the actual content.

Now, I realise that in our visual world, the appearance of the blog is a huge part of the package, and just as important as the “content”–the medium is the message kind of thing.

Your message is only as good as your ability to share it.  

So, just as I am finally getting a little more comfortable with public sharing, and hoping that people actually do take a look, at  week 3 with no comments on my blog, I am a little disheartened.  But I have to remember my inner mantra form week 2…Networking is High Maintenance, and you get out what you put in…So, I am going to  step up my game in the karmic commenting department myself.  More on how that turns out later…

Spreading UK love…

 

And in the end, the love you take is equal to the love you make.–The Beatles

6952515045

For the love…

The next part of the game plan to make more visually appealing blog posts is to find some good and legal sources for images…Pinterest had a zillion lovely memes for my favourite Beatles lyric, but I am not sure how legally I am allowed to share them.  I am loving the noun project but am otherwise wondering why is it that the nicest images aren’t found in any creative commons search engines?  I am also still figuring out how to best credit images…photos for class is great for being easy to use, but the embedded attribution really takes away from the visual experience.

 

 Yuck!  →→→→→→→→→→→→→→→→→→→→→→→→→→→

I am also learning from free technology for teachers about best practices for using images.   I know this week is supposed to be all, “Google+ and Twitter”…but I am actually all, “Sign myself up for free pics!” Woohoo!

 

 

 

Photo Credit: UK love, flickr photo by @Doug88888 https://flickr.com/photos/doug88888/3447152946 shared under a Creative Commons (BY-NC-SA) license