Digital Doors was created as a place for me to blog and share resources that I think would be helpful for teachers integrating technology in meaningful ways in their classroom. My goal would be to write a blog post a week, but with my busy schedule, that doesn't happen. I write when I can and rely on nifty tools to help me share what I am finding when I don't have time to write.
Thursday, November 6, 2008
Will They Google Well?
This morning I participated in a state wide video conference on Internet Safety. New legislation says that we must be teaching children about internet safety and internet etiquette. We reviewed several different programs that are out there and available for us to use. I was a little disheartened that all of the resources seemed to be designed to scare kids into doing the right thing. I know that there are predators and cyber bullying is a huge issue. I do think that we must address these issues to keep our students safe. I just feel that there also many positive lessons for students to learn about being a cyber citizen. I think that students have the opportunity to build their web presence in a positive light. This is an opportunity for students to shine and share their very best with a world audience. If students think of the Internet as a clandestine place with evil lurking around every corner, they are more likely to participate in that type of CyberWorld. If students are taught how to share their work and ideas, have thought provoking conversations and build the presence they would like the world to see, I think not only will the students be safer, but the Internet would be a safer and friendlier place for all. I once heard Will Richardson talk about a student who "Googled Well". This student had a presence on the web. She had created a website with a focus on doing one good thing each day. Her website had really taken off and her ideas were having an impact on the world of others. Vicki Davis shares that she tells students to give everything they publish on the web the "President Test", how would what you are sharing look if someone found this when you were running for president. And recently, Steve Dembo challenged us to think about what we would like our Wikipedia page to say about us. Helping students to see their place on the Internet in this way is, I feel just as powerful and important and helping them know how to stay safe on the Internet. Citizenship isn't about fear, it is about being responsible, thinking before you act, and making wise and powerful choices.
Here are some of the resources I gathered today. Powerful stuff, but please remember to share the positive side as well.
http://www.staysafe.org/ parent and family focus
Photo: Flickr Creative Commons L'espace internet du musée de la Communication (Berlin) Pin It Now!