Tech, Teaching and Me

Trying to turn off my brain by writing it down

Creating Future Digital Citizens

on November 4, 2012

According to this study, 92% of US toddlers in 2010 had an online presence. In fact, “on average, 23% of parents share images from prenatal sonograms on the web”. Let’s examine this fact. Do you realize this means babies have an online presence before they are even born? A digital footprint for the younger generation is a done deal! Being a digital citizen is a part of our student’s future, if not present.

Students are no longer in charge of everything connected with their name on the internet. Being in charged of the tag of their name, or a photo is almost impossible. Students must learn their digital footprint will be created with or without them. Teaching students to be a digital citizen and all that comes with it is essential to their future. Learning to flood the footprint with positivity is an essential life skill.

Our students will eventually be “Google Searched” for college acceptance or an employment opportunity. Our students need to learn to succeed they must attach as many positive, thoughtful postings, impressive photos, academic and societal awards as possible to their image so the first “page” of information is impressive.

According to Mike Ribble’s “Passport to Digital Citizenship”, ” these four stages  provide a framework for helping children understand why being good digital citizens is important”. The stages are:

-Stage 1: Awareness-“Awareness means engaging students
to become technologically literate”

-Stage 2: Guided Practice-“The school needs to become a place where students
can investigate with technologies they use every day”

Stage 3: Modeling & Demonstration-“kids need numerous technology
role models to gain a thorough understanding of these complex concepts”

-Stage 4: Feedback and Analysis-“Kids should have the opportunity to analyze and explore why they should use technologies in a certain way”

Using these stages creates the opportunity for digital citizenship reflection and application. Our students need the direct instruction, the practice and the modeling to be effective, competent, competitive, intelligent and kind digital citizens.

For those students who do not have the ability to practice these essential stages at home,  it is more important than ever for schools to create an environment for the successful training of our future digital citizens.

Students need to be made aware, guided, given role models and then allowed to make mistakes and be given feedback for correction and understanding in their digital world.

3 responses to “Creating Future Digital Citizens

  1. Lynn Woods says:

    Kay, my nephew and son posted a sonogram of their babies on Facebook. At first, I was quite taken aback. I thought “Really, this is going a little far!” but then as I thought about it I realized that I would not have been able to see that beautiful little baby girl at that stage in her life if he hadn’t done that. Living in a different town presents different problems of connecting with grandchildren and children. Technology has created a way for us to connect the distances between us. Sometimes it is hard to embrace a new technology since it is so scary. Thinking about my students putting so much of their work on the Internet for all to see scares me because I fear judgement of both them and me. At the same time, it opens them and me up for affirmation that we are on the right track. A two-edged sword. We may choose not to believe it but we and more especially our students, are global citizens and we need to put our best foot forward. Food for thought.

  2. Nice blog post, I commented!

    Leaving Lurking Lynn

  3. kbisaill says:

    “Thinking about my students putting so much of their work on the Internet for all to see scares me because I fear judgement of both them and me” is such an open and honest statement. Being judged by others and on a GLOBAL scale is scary. Yet, feedback, positive, constructive and even negative can only help us to reflect and edit ourselves. For the students and for us as educators.

    Recently, as you know, I opened myself up to an experience and asked for feedback from “someone”. I got a bit of a “smack down”. It hurt. It was globally embarrassing. Yet, I am stronger for the experience. I realize that some people just don’t get what we are doing. It’s not the same as “being judged” for student work or “being judged” as a teacher but I do understand what you are saying.

    Together we are better than we are alone. Allowing as much “together” as we possibly can for our students can only make us better.

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