For my Learning Thing, I decided to kill two birds with one stone and use this project to get a good start on the curriculum I am building for a course I’m teaching called Video Productions. This course is an entry-level video class for 7th and 8th-grade students at Goldenview Middle School. I’m taking it over due to the retirement of a teacher who taught it for 20 years. During that time, he didn’t create a curriculum, so I decided now would be a great opportunity to build one.
The curriculum is based off a free course I took through the Adobe Education Exchange. The course includes aspects of digital citizenship (creating a public Learning Log on Google Sites) and using either creative commons or original content to create projects. All videos and projects I linked to in this course were taken from Adobe, Vimeo and YouTube. I modified some of the text, but I still need to modify more before the school year begins. So far I have only created 4 of the 8 “Classes.” Also, I used Google Sites for the entire curriculum. So far I am very pleased with this platform.
Think About Your Thinking
My thinking about digital citizenship went from 0 to 100 since the beginning of this course, mostly because I had never thought about it before May. But now that I have, I notice I use the phrase — and think of the phrase — quite often. I think about what it means to be a responsible digital citizen and I think about how I want to teach my son how to be a responsible citizen and digital citizen. I also think about how summertime can be a great time for my family and my students to become more responsible digital citizens.
Digital citizenship isn’t just knowing how to use technology, it’s also about accepting that we live in a technology-driven world and using technology in creative ways to build strong communities. Summertime is also a time for people to get outside, explore, problem solve, work with others, and create lasting memories. These real-world skills gained outdoors can transfer to the digital environment as well. For example, experiencing a week living off the grid while camping on the remote Denali Highway could motivate a student to be more aware of environmental issues in their hometown. That motivation could lead to better digital citizenship by using social media in positive ways, rather than negative. The trip could build stronger relationships with people online who like to travel, camp, and experience nature.
Digital citizenship relates to plain old citizenship because they both require respectful communication. Digital citizenship reminds me of summer camp, a place where people of different ages, hometowns, and backgrounds meet. If you’re going to have a good time at summer camp, you need to practice how to be a respectful community member within the camp. A strong sense of community is a big reason why kids return year after year. I know this firsthand because I was a camp counselor for three summers. In the digital world, the same rules should apply to building strong communities.
Because the internet can be a daunting place for some people, I’ve learned that it’s important for me to be a responsible digital citizen by learning more and more about it means to be digitally literate and then be able to transfer that knowledge to people who have trouble understanding technology.
Advice For Future Students
- Like any class you take, do not procrastinate with your course work. This class requires many hours on the computer. In order to get what you pay for, you need to put in the time to read, explore, and take chances.
- Tackle projects head on by using platforms that seem daunting at first.
- If you are taking this class during the summer, enjoy your long summer days and do your course work in the evenings.
- For the project “Collaborate (a little),” be proactive about finding group members to work with.
- Find the time to read other people’s posts. You receive a grade for commenting, but it’s also an excellent way to gain another perspective, learn new tech tricks, or just see how other people set up their blogs.
- Speaking of, spend time tinkering with your blog to make it look nice and easy to navigate. I think it’s worth the time.
- Don’t hesitate to contact Chris Lott if you have questions. He’s great at responding. But don’t expect him to hold your hand throughout this course. The majority of the projects in this class are open-ended, which can be frustrating to some learners. Personally, I liked it. You also have to be a self-starter if you expect to gain anything from this course.
- Finally, have fun. This was a fantastic class!