All of us who advocate for the learning potential of mobile technologies continue to navigate the hurdles of opening up BYOD devices in the unique context of school. My students and I had an â€œa-haâ€ moment the other day, in terms of digital citizenship and how we really need to think before we post images to the Internet. Or maybe even before we take the picture.
Integrity is a key virtue for todayâ€™s culture, says Sister Geralyn Schmidt, education technology coordinator for the Diocese of Harrisburg (PA). “In todayâ€™s world, each of us who has a digital footprint makes two impressions: one in the real world and one in the virtual world. The words and attitudes that we use in both arenas must match. When we achieve this, we become someone whom others can truly rely upon.”
“While my six- and seven-year old students donâ€™t yet even understand the words ‘digital’ or ‘citizenship,’ they also need direction and support as they explore online spaces,” writes primary teacher Kathy Cassidy. “In fact, they need this instruction even more than their older counterparts.” Here’s how Cassidy teaches kids to be good (and safe) digital citizens.
My teaching mission is simple yet absolutely necessary to helping my students prepare for their futures. I began this school year with a list of questions that could help me envision, plan, reflect and maintain focus on where my students and I needed to be when the last bell rings in late May. Out of my personal questioning and reflection came what would be the essential question for my 11th grade social studies students during our time together: “What does it mean to be a citizen nationally, globally and digitally?”