Social Networking and Digital Citizenship

I learned a variety of things as we dug into the topic of social networking. Although there are sites out there, it’s hard to find social networking sites that are educational and safe for students. Many of my students use Facebook on their personal time, but it is blocked for use by my district. I also don’t think that I’d feel comfortable using it in the classroom.  I have also been very narrow minded when it comes to social networking. I myself don’t really use anything beyond Facebook and the Classroom 2.0 site that we use for this class. I know that there are many more out there from music, cooking, news, informational, educational, etc. that I could be exploring.

I will continue to use school fusion, the blackboard site that my district provides for teachers, students, and parents, as a social networking site. On that site, I can post assignments, files, links, etc. for my students. The students can also blog about topics that we cover in the classroom. Another tool that was added for teacher and student use was the capability of creating web pages (posters). This site is a great way for students, parents, and teachers to communicate with each other.

I agree that most acceptable use policies are introduced at the beginning of the year and not referred to again, thus a digital citizenship policy is very important to have in the classroom. Teachers can’t just expect that a student knows the how to behave when it comes to the digital world. Young students tend to think that they are immune to all of the “dangers” of the Internet and that they know everything already. That would be the ideal expectation, but that is not always the case.

I would definitely share my digital citizenship policy that my colleague and I created with my team and even my school. I think that we did an effective job of writing the policy.  Anytime my classes use the computers at school, I think that it would be beneficial for them and me if we went over the digital citizenship policy as a reminder for proper behavior.

The more subject matter that we dive into with this class the more excited I get about the educational opportunities that I can provide my students in the classroom. The technological world has definitely changed from when I first began teaching compared to today.

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