Bill MacKenty

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The Digital Citenzship Opportunity

Posted in Educational Tech Design on 12 - December 2011 at 09:33 AM (12 years ago). 216 views.

Digital Citizenship has always been a nebulous idea for me. I always appreciated and referred people to Zen and the art of the internet when understanding "how to be" on the internet.

At my current school digital citizenship is not at the front of our ship right now; however, I do see evidence of digital citizenship infused into our curriculum in the form of "laptop drivers licenses", AUP's, (and RUP's), and we also have a very well defined cyberbullying protocol which is sadly used more than I'd like to. Our middle school employs a monitoring tool to support students to make good choices. We had our very first "red-card" situation this week in the MS, where two boys were playing games after being warned repeatedly. We have a pretty good system to support abuses, and we have an excellent system to communicate with parents (not just about digital citizenship, but everything else related to technology).

Perhaps the best opportunity we have to help our community understand digital citizenship is when there is a problem. We had a case last year where, literally, 2 days after a 3 week digital citizenship course some kids made a gossip-girl-style facebook group with extraordinary hurtful things on it. This after an intensive course! The real teaching and learning happened at that moment of opportunity, parents, students, and teachers were all hot about this issue, and that is when we saw real change and awareness in student thinking about digital citizenship. I've found the cyberbullying protocol to be especially effective in resolving specific issues.