Digital citizenship is something that can and should be easily integrated into any content area and grade level. As a matter of fact, schools are now required to
"...educate minors about appropriate online behavior, including interacting with other individuals on social networking websites and in chat rooms and cyberbullying awareness and response."The exact lessons and amount of instructional time spent on this content are left up to individual teachers and school sites to decide based upon the needs of their students. As a school we have selected Common Sense Media's Digital Literacy and Citizenship curriculum to assist teachers with integrating this content into classrooms lessons. The curriculum has age-appropriate lessons from elementary through high school built around eight categories.
- Internet Safety
- Privacy & Security
- Relationships & Communication
- Digital Footprint & Reputation
- Self-Image & Identity
- Information Literacy
- Creative Credit & Copyright
The Digital Literacy and Citizenship curriculum can be introduced as part of a technology elective in the grades where we offer that course, however the concepts need to be reinforced throughout all our classes. As a matter of fact, last year NCS teachers identified lessons they planned to teach, but each of us needs to find ways for bringing this content into our classrooms through authentic classroom lessons and experiences. The lessons within the Common Sense Media curriculum are designed so that teachers and can easily modify the content and use the lessons independently from other lessons within the curriculum. For example, if you are using Edmodo with your students for classroom discussions you might consider using the Build Your Ideal Community lesson to work with students on appropriate conversations and interactions for promoting positive online communities.
After Winter Break we will spend some of our professional development time reviewing the Common Sense Media Curriculum and developing links between these lessons and the units each of us already teach. However, to get things started you might consider your own lessons and technology use and explore the Common Sense Media curriculum to begin making your own connections.
Photo: IMG_5503 by Tray on Flickr