For this week’s post, we were asked to provide an update of our major project and discuss how it relates to one or more of Ribble’s Nine Elements of Digital Citizenship. Back in January, I made the decision to develop a curriculum-based resource for teaching digital citizenship . Although there were several tempting project ideas to choose from, my decision for developing this resource was purely based on the rationale that I could utilize it upon returning to work. As a few of you already know, I am currently on maternity leave. So, by the time I return to work, my project should be complete and ready to implement with my students.
When I first began to map out the details for my major project, I knew I would be investigating the following resources: Ribble’s Nine Elements of Digital Citizenship, Saskatchewan’s Digital Citizenship Continuum, Saskatchewan’s Digital Citizenship Policy Planning Guide and the Common Sense Education website. By examining these resources in depth, my project will encompass the proper content requirements for teaching digital citizenship as well as include the use of digital tools.
In order to teach students to think critically online and offline, my project will focus on all nine aspects of digital citizenship: Digital Etiquette, Digital Access, Digital Law, Digital Communication, Digital Literacy, Digital Commerce, Digital Rights and Responsibilities, Digital Health and Wellness and Digital Security. Specifically, the goal for my project is to develop a unit plan (grades 3-5) which includes detailed lesson plans to support each element. My plans will consist of effective strategies for educating students about each element and contain interactive activities for both teachers and students to partake in. By including the use of digital tools and social media apps, students will be able to practice appropriate and responsible behaviour but in a supportive environment, guided by the teacher.
My overall goal for my major project is to create opportunities for both teachers and students to positively engage in the online world with confidence and comfortability. Once my project is complete, I am hoping to share this resource with my colleagues so that they may promote the importance of digital citizenship. As educators, it is important to acknowledge that technology plays a large roll in how we learn and communicate. We know that every child is unique and has different needs and technology contributes to our students learning as it provides enrichment and support in many different ways. Therefore, I’m hoping my curriculum-based resource will offer myself and other educators a starting point for incorporating digital citizenship into our teaching practices rather than deny students the use of digital tools because we fear they are not responsible to operate them. Let’s embrace the many advantages technology offers and teach our students how to be positive digital citizens online and offline.