Teaching them to be safe & be good digital citizens

Screenshot digital citizenship

Digital Education Revolution Digital Citizenship website:

The school I work in uses our learning to learn program which is offered to our boys in years 7 & 8 as a place where digital citizenship and safety is learnt about. Students have had visits from the police liason officer throughout the year regarding how they can safeguard themselves when it comes to accessing and posting information. The digital revolution’s nsw digital citizenship website (http://www.digitalcitizenship.nsw.edu.au/index.html) is a good place for students to gain some interactive lessons on how to act appropriately within a digital world. Even when I use Edmodo in the classroom, I have to remind students how to act appropriately when they comment so that anything that may offend others has been carefully considered. Edmodo is a good place for younger students to learn online etiquette, as ultimately, as the teacher I can view what is being posted and if needed, remove comments and take further action against students who are not behaving themselves. I believe its very important that students know how serious cyber bullying can be and how serious the consequences, but I do think students are really beginning to understand this. I know at our school any online bullying is taken extremely seriously. Having the police visit the students was great as they were able to discuss the legalities involved with some of the things students see, access and share digitally & it helps to reinforce what the school needs to do to keep our students safe and happy.

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2 thoughts on “Teaching them to be safe & be good digital citizens

  1. hi Karissa,
    It looks like you are using a good range of avenues to educate and safeguard students in regards to their cyber presence. In my recent role as a Year Coordinator in a girls’ school I have been frustrated and bemused on a number of occasions following many learning opportunities to develop digital citizenship, that some adolescent girls seemingly need to actually make the mistake to learn the lesson!

    One observation I have made in trying to develop a holistic cyber safety curriculum is that students often listen to and trust older students, and I have had success with cyber-safety presentations by seniors for middle school students, rather than teachers. I also like the idea of ‘cyber doctors’ described by Andrew Fuller (http://andrewfuller.com.au/wp-content/uploads/2014/08/cyber.pdf) – a peer project that some schools have implemented to support students who experience issues online.

    Lisa

    • Hi Lisa
      Thanks for your comment and link to Andrew Fuller’s ‘Cyber Doctors’ project – this would be a worthwhile program to implement, especially in a secondary school setting. I can understand some of the frustrations you must feel working in an all-girls school that would come from some of the decisions teenage girls make. Working in an all boys school, I see the other side – the boys reaction to some of these actions and I wish many girls had the opportunity to hear what the boys actually think of them when they send the nudey snapchat or similar. As a mum of a now 16 year old girl, I often discuss this with her – there really is disparity between opinions/attitudes and I think if all adolescent girls were able to hear how boys truthfully interpret their actions, they may think twice.
      Cheers, Karissa

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