Digital Citizenship

2014_ribbonHappy new year. Like all new years, it is a time of  anticipation and new beginnings. Especially with all the technological changes that our students have at their fingertips. While they may be really comfortable at texting and bouncing from one interchange to another, there is a significant difference when using technologies for organized multiple purposes. Powerful research skills, understanding bias in published content, online communication and decision making all need practice to be proficient. Questions such as how do we teach internet safety, what happens to our digital footprint, how do we engage in dialogue on cyberbullying,  what about copyright as we consume and create online, what about privacy, are all front and center in our lives. These topics can all fit under the larger umbrella of Digital Literacy and Digital Citizenship.

Digital Citizenship might be described as the ability to integrate technologies to fully engage in  an increasingly global and digital world. These skills or competencies reflect the need to analyze, learn and explore a world, that for the most part has not yet been conceived. A bit daunting, yet each topic area can be broken down. The key is to purposefully embed these into your everyday curriculum from early elementary upwards.

Over the next months and year, we will be actively delving into this area with practical ways that support the classroom.  You can start by joining us at our District Pro-D on February 21th.   Come and be a part of the developing journey as it unfolds. More information and registration will be in the District Pro-D calendar.

September Newsletter Off The Presses

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September is filled with a mix of “welcome back activities” as well as planning for possibilities.  Our September Newsletter is hot off the presses.  Click here for your copy.  You can also click on the News tab in the navigation bar for an archive of all the newsletters.

A New Year to Explore, Create and Learn

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Welcome back.  It’s been a fabulous summer, especially with the spectacular weather offering lots of opportunities to rest, rejuvenate and re-energize.

We anticipate a very exciting year filled with new connections and new ways to look at past practices.  This summer, more schools were upgraded to the new Active Directory / School Connect structure [replacing Novell].  This along with other projects will continue throughout the year.

There are many opportunities to engage in dialogue, practice new skills and have fun while purposefully integrating digital tools and processes. One of the challenges of this area, is the dizzying speed at which new technologies is happening.  For some, this is extremely exciting – something akin to Christmas.  For others, it can be quite confusing and frustrating. The key is ‘purpose’ – what do you want to accomplish or what do you want your students to accomplish?  An example might be: “I want to communicate my intentions regarding projects without having to repeat it a hundred times.” Any number of possibilities come to mind; most include accessing the digital literacies.  Several avenues will help you move forward – check the Staff Development Calendar [sessions are updated throughout the year];  ask your tech liaison at the school for guidance or contact our Learning Technologies Team.  We love helping people connect and be empowered.

*Check out our newsletters [3-4 times/year] packed with ideas, learning tips and opportunities. If you would like a personal copy emailed to you, please email our Learning Tech Team.  Archives are found under the NEWS tab.