Scenarios and Solutions

Your task

In replies to this message, post a scenario developed in class. Include at least one solution or outcome of your scenario for John and Alex to consider.  Write succinctly and clearly and invite John and Alex to make the specific comments you need to deepen your  knowledge.

The scenario (Group activity)

Using your growing  knowledge about cybercitizenship or digital citizenship, unpack some issues or opportunities you think schools have to respond to.  Choose one as a basis for thinking specifically about what you might advise a school to do. Develop as a scenario for a particular context (age, student group description, location of school maybe, other significant factors affecting the issue). Develop a description of your scenario  about an issue or opportunity for a specific context. Describe why this is important.

Develop several ideas for potential actions a school might take. Select the best one, based on practicality and expected success.  Develop a short description of your solution.

Post these two short paragraphs as a reply to this message.  Develop a friendly conversational tone and sign off with first names, so John can talk with you. If you feel okay about sharing a photo of your group, do that.

37 thoughts on “Scenarios and Solutions

  1. Students have been ‘face-stalking’ my face book page and sending me messages, what do I do? I love using my face book, and it is how I connect with my family in New Zealand, but I feel like it has become too hard to deal with the students bombardment and don’t want to be seen as unprofessional.

    Some possible solutions we came up with were looking into the school and government policies regarding this area and see what my rights are and also discussing with the students and their parents about their behaviour and discuss whether they felt it was appropriate. Can you think of any other ways to deal with this issue?

      • Hi Rick

        1. Wouldn’t adjusting your Facebook setting alleviate most of the problems for you? I certainly hope none of the students have been ‘friended’ by you – a big no no for most schools.

        2. How are we going to deal with the students? Are they part of your school or at another school? They certainly need to consider what being a good digital citizen means.

        • I agree with John’s comment. The connections with
          students are a no-go zone really. The systems and the school will have a policy on this, some stricter than others. I

          I would suggest alternative family account without identification info. When you present to interview, you need to be aware of and understand that systems policies.

          Its rather cool to look at the Fake Facebook tool and think about ways of using that to role play scenarios.

          What position should pre-service teachers taken when on prac team? Keen to see your responses.

      • Think of the immediate issue, deal with it then look at the wider and longer term problems and how to address them.

        I agree with John, the first thing is to know and use the security settings. If you know the kids, and there are only a few, then see them individually face-to-face and tell them that you only use your Facebook for family. They will soon get the message if you don’t reply online.

        If you are getting a lot of kids in a grade level or throughout the school then maybe some time in an assembly to let the students know the settings and the reason why teachers will not respond to student messages.

        If the students are under 13 then a message in the school newsletter may help but probably not much.

        If the messages to your Facebook are unpleasant or inappropriate then the students must be educated in the legal ramifications of online harassment and that they can be reported to the Police and can be tracked regardless of their alias. Check your school or system handbook for policy on this. Schools are at different stages with addressing this, some of the systems -especially EQ – have very specific guidelines and regulations.

        Long term I agree with the key being education of the students and their families. John in his school is further down the track with this but both our schools take this approach.

  2. Hi John,

    Our group has come up with the following scenario for our online event. Below you will find our context, scenario and a few possible solutions. We would love your feedback or comments and appreciate you taking the time to read our ideas and solutions. Thanks,

    Haylee, Cassie & Sarah. EDC3100 ICT & Pedagogy.

    Our context is a primary school setting, focused around grades 4-7. The students have access to a school email system with their own personal email accounts.

    A student is being bullied online during and outside of school hours. The bully has been identified as a school student, however is posting anonymous emails via a fake email account. The student is under constant stress from the bullying and the problem is impacting not only the school student, but the students’ friendship group, class time and the school class group.

    – Digital communication
    – Digital etiquette
    – Digital rights and responsibilities
    – Digital health and wellness

    We believe there needs to be two types of solutions for this scenario. Firstly, there needs to be a system in place to educate both the ‘victims’ as well as the ‘users’, and this could encapsulate all students. The ‘victim’ needs to have an understanding of their digital literacy, as well as being educated on the importance and seriousness of online bullying. It is also important to take this aspect of ‘digital literacy’ and use it inform the students on the correct etiquette and safety procedures for being an online user. Students need to understand what is right, what is wrong, when to speak up and how to deal with prevention and post-prevention strategies with this issue.

    We believe it would be vital to have strategies in place for both ‘prevention’ and ‘post-prevention’ (before and after) so that students are prepared and informed in all cases.

    ‘Prevention’ Phase:
    – Step by step tutorials on digital literacy; learning what is right, what is wrong etc.
    – Giving students the tools to monitor their own online safety.
    – Involving parents in signing an ‘acceptable use policy’ and making sure teachers/principles are keeping parents up to date on their child’s digital footprint.

    ‘Post Prevention’ Phase:
    – Working with parents on prevention methods at home.
    – Having systems in place in schools on how to monitor, record, prevent and if needed, take further the actions of the issue at hand.
    – Withdrawing the student (victim) from the problem, helping to resolve their emotional issues, and ensuring strategies are in place to enable the student to feel safe again (change of email address, change of class etc)
    – If needed, having group meetings (per grade, or whole school) on educating students of the seriousness of harrassment and bullying and the appropriate measures that need to be taken to deal with these problems.

    We would love to hear your feedback on our scenario and possible solutions, whether or not this is something you deal with on a daily basis, and how schools monitor this kind of digital bullying/harrassment, and the programs involved with dealing with these issues. Thanks. 🙂

    • Hi Haylee, Cassie & Sarah

      You have done a very thorough job in outlining your scenario but I have a few further questions for you.

      1. I am assuming that the bully goes to the same school as the victum – is that correct?

      2. If the students are grades 4-7, how is the bully “posting anonymous emails via a fake email account”. System email accounts (ie Exchange – EQ) are very difficult to fake. I really don’t think a year 4-7 student would be able to do that. Perhaps they are using a webmail account (ie. Hotmail)? But if that is the case then we have another problem as most school block web based email for this very reason. We need some more detail here.

      3. How do you intend to identify the bully? If the bully is at the same school they need as much, if not more, help than the victum.

      4. Give me some more details about “Giving students the tools to monitor their own online safety”. What were you thinking about here?

      5. How do you intend to achieve “Working with parents on prevention methods at home”?

      6. You suggest changing the student’s email address. We use this as a very last resort as the student’s email address is uaually linked to their unique username which they have for their entire school life. What other methods could you use rather than this last resort?

      7. If the bully is using a wreb mail account, what steps could you take to identify them?

      OK – enough questions for now. I’m looking forward to a few more details.

      • 1. Yes the bully goes to the same school as the victim.
        2. The student is being bullied out of school from fake email accounts via Hotmail/MSN which for students is just as simple as creating a new account. This bullying out of school is clearly linked to the bullying that is happening during school hours by the types of comments being made. During school hours the student is receiving several emails from another students account. This is because students may be sharing their passwords or login information with others; therefore students need to be taught about safety and security when creating accounts and passwords. This situation means that the student whose account is being ‘hacked’ would need definite evidence that this is what is actually happening. This narrows the bully down for the student and teachers as this particular student may recall who they have shared their email login details with and the password could be changed. To be certain, teachers could monitor when this email is being logged on to (all emails have a time and date) and therefore could see which students had access to computers at this time. It could be during lunch hours, ICT lessons or class time. In the case of lunch hours there is generally a system where students write their name down when entering the Computer Lab and depending on the size of the school their name may have to be matched with an ID card for the teacher to verify this is the student. Therefore this would narrow down a possible bully, although assumptions should never be made in these kinds of situations.
        3. We were discussing the best way to identify the bully in this situation would be to give them an opportunity to come forward. The issue would be briefly stated to the year levels of 4-7, with no names mentioned of course, just to let the bully know that what is happening is known by the school and is a serious issue. If in this instance the bully does not fess up, the school may then stress that the issue can be taken further. When the bully is identified we agreed that it would be extremely important for them to receive some help as well to help them understand the true extent of how their actions are making their peer feel. This could be through the school counselor or a teacher with who the student feels comfortable with.

        4. What we meant by “Giving students the tools to monitor their own online safety” is a range of things. Firstly, teaching them what to look out for online and the signs to take into consideration surrounding ‘stranger danger’ whilst browsing the web and sites such as Facebook is very important. As well as only accepting/talking to a person if they are sure they know who they are. As mentioned above the importance of keeping their account/email passwords and information to themselves would also be a key point to focus on.
        Another thing that we discussed to be important is to teach the students about digital literacy so that they can understand what is and what isn’t, an appropriate way to interact online. We also discussed the suitable ways to react and/or respond to a harsh message when sent to them via email or through Facebook from whom they may or may not know. Information that they should and should not be posting online should also be addressed as part of their literacy etiquette. Learning how to correctly use the privacy settings on these websites should be understood as well as how to effectively use the report button or other blocking methods in situations where a student may feel threatened.
        5. Working on preventative methods with parents at home can be achieved by sending home an information pack to parents via a letter or email. This could contain information and procedures for parents to follow regarding how their child can safely use technology at home and how they can monitor this. Information could be provided to parents on getting a security program installed and how parents can block their child from accessing certain websites or programs. Parents also need to be provided with information on what to do if their child is being bullied or what to do if they suspect their child is bullying others and how they can deal with these issues in the home environment.
        6. Maybe instead of changing the students email address the account the student is receiving emails from could be temporarily blocked from sending the student messages (I’m not sure this is possible on a school email account as I don’t know much about them). The student who is being bullied otherwise might need a break from using these technologies as they will need time to move forward from the situation. At home the parents may need to prevent them from using their MSN or Hotmail account until the problem has been resolved. The student needs to be prevented from accessing all the sources he/she is being bullied from.
        7. If the bullying is occurring via a school email account where a student is using another student’s account, certain steps that could be taken to identify them may involve the following. Firstly, these accounts often require password changes, so when this happens if the owner of the account changes the password, the bully will be stopped from gaining access. All the strategies mentioned above would then be put into place if the bullying continued.

        • Overall I would say. Treat the behaviour and not the tool being used. Most schools have an antibullying policy and designated methods for dealing with the bully and the bullied – both need help.

          If the bullying is ongoing students must know that online bullying whether in or outside school is illegal and copies should be kept of all texts and messages. The Police can and should be brought in (by the parents or the school) for serious cases that the school finds difficult to deal with. Check the guidelines and regulations within the school or system as guides are being developed for this.

          The first responsibility is to protect the students from harm and there is no doubt that even moderate bullying in any form is harmful to the present and future health of individuals.

          The Police can and do ask online services for details of online communications and can reasonably easily track even the most innovative email alias.

          Most of our efforts should be focussed on prevention rather than dealing with bullying once it occurs. We must be working as much as possible to produce respectful, responsible and ethical digital citizens. It would be naive to think that we can do this well enough to prevent all bullying but education of students throughout their schooling matched with education of parents, to empower them to act as effective parents on these issues, is the only real approach.

          There is a deal of other information in the other responses within this blog to give additional ideas for cases such as yours.

          This is a very important area of consideration with many grey areas.

          • I wonder if students realise that harassing another stduent online is actually bullying? I think that a bigger definitin of bullying is now widely accepted but wonder whether students understand that cyber bullying is also clearly bullying? Great conversation guys – really interesting thinking.

          • Hi everyone,

            Thank you for your feedback. We agree with you Alex, about treating the behaviour over the tool which is being used and to protect the students from harm if they are involved in the situation. Above all however, we believe in preventing these issues from happening in the first place.

            Michelle, we think your point is also very important and students need to realise that harassing another student online is also bullying. This needs to be made clear to students whether in the school or home environment.

            Lastly, we would like to thank you all for your time and contribution to our scenario and questions. Your expertise on this topic has improved our understanding and provided deeper, critical thinking for us to address these issues in schools.

            Haylee, Sarah & Cassie 🙂

  3. Hello John, we have chosen Digital health and well-being as our topic of choice. Our scenario is students are in a computer lab researching body image for a project they are participating in and access inappropriate sites that are irrelevant to the topic.

    One solution we agreed upon was schools’ using a software program called SMART Sync classroom management software. This software enables the teacher to monitor the information every student is accessing from his/her monitor. This allows the teacher to see if students are on or off task.
    Thanks for participating with us,
    Fiona, Frances, Brooke and Andrea.

      • Hi Fiona, Frances, Brooke and Andrea

        This is a very common scenario – well done. I do have a few questions for you however.

        1. How long did the students look at the sites? Your proxy logs will tell you the exact time. This is important because our students are always told to immediately shut down an inappropiate site after noting its URL. If the site has been shared and looked at by other students then our response is different.

        2. Have the student’s signed an acceptable use policy (AUP) for the school network? If they have, then it will cover this situation. Below is our paragraph (primary AUP) on this:

        If I find anything mean or rude or things I know are not acceptable at our school on any ICT, I will:
        • Not show others
        • Turn off the screen or minimise the window and
        • Get a teacher straight away.

        3. Many schools use classroom management software (we use Lanschool) and it can act as a deterrent but nothing beats active supervision by the teacher in the classroom. Do you think monitoring classroom management software could stop teachers interacting with their students? How would you use it in a lesson?

        4. Finally, how will you deal with the fact that your students have accessed an inappropiate site? What will you say to the students? Will you inform the Principal? Will you inform their parents?

      • I completely agree with John.
        It is impractical to rely on computer monitoring software as a mainstay method for keeping kids on track. Far better to teach appropriate behaviours and give clear guidance of expectations. Get the kids to come up with the expectations and guidelines so that you have agreed ground rules.

        • Fiona, Frances, Brooke and Andrea.

          I wonder if there is a missed opportunity in your idea here. Digital health and well-being is an interesting field which includes students feeling good about themselves while working online and projecting a positive confident image online. Your idea is about body image research. Students profiles often include images, stories about what they are doing, conversations etc – all modes of communication about how one feel’s about one’s self. that is students are telling a story about themselves online through what they say, images and videos they put up, comments they make to others etc. I wonder if this topic is really about the projection of self online and how students need to be careful about what that is and that they need to project themselves in a positive way – for example to future employers. What do you think? I wonder if the digital health aspect of your scenario is undeveloped yet – what do you think this term means. You may well have some very interesting ideas coming up for your assessment piece on digitial citizenship.

  4. Hi John 🙂

    My scenario is:

    A year 9 HPE class is working on a unit that requires computer use for the reasearch and construction of their assignments. Students are jumping on email and messaging nasty comments about other students in the class instead of doing their work. They are disrupting the class by laughing and sniggering at the student they are talking about. This scenario occured numerous times during my time at school so I know it is a common issue that teacher’s face.

    My possible solutions:

    As a HPE teacher, part of the unit would include looking at sports contracts and codes of conduct that athletes and sporting teams are expected to follow. After introducing this, I would then refer to digital etiquette and explain that in this class we are expected to follow a code of conduct just as sports people and athletes do. I would breief the students on digital etiquette and my expectations for their behaviour before getting the students to sign their contracts. I would involve the parents by sending them a copy of the code for them to also sign to gain support from home.

    My question for you would be:

    How does your school deal with this situation when it occurs?
    What do you put in place to prevent this from occuring?
    How do you deal with students who breach codes and take part in activities such as these?
    How do you make students aware of the importance of digital etiquette?
    Is there pehaps a need to change the pedagogy of the class to prevent students from multi tasking when it is prefered that they focus on the task at hand?


    • Hi Nikki

      Today the bulk of our nasty comments come through Facebook or text comments – its been quite a while since I dealt with email issues. However to answer your questions:

      1. The students concerned would have breached their network AUP (acceptable use policy). As a first step the supervising teacher should have stopped the behaviour as soon as it started. Our girls have it drilled into them to immediately approach someone as soon as nasty comments occur. For persistant bullying, I deal with the breach of the AUP (usually they lose their right to access email for a period of time) and our pastoral team deal with the bullying.

      2. We have a very clear AUP. I meet with all new students and take them through their responsibilities when using the MBC network. This is also covered in lessons from P-10. Teachers have classroom management software that they can also use to monitor students use of devices during a lesson.

      3. see above

      4. AUP, explicit lessons within the curriculum, guest speakers (ie. Brett Lee or Susan McLean), Cyber Safety Awareness Day, assembly presentations by the ICT Support students.

      5. Of course. Good supervision and interaction with any class is essential, especially when they are using technology. If accessing email is a problem, good classroom management software can be used to block any application that you want. Of course, bored students are more likely to go off task. So the important question is: How can I make my activity engaging?

      • Thanks John

        How many incidents like this would you need to address in a year – how common is it? Alex, keen to hear what you think too. I know this team saw lots of evidence of it and I know I have too last year in a particular family situation. Just how much does it happen or do you think the strategies at your respective schools make the difference?

        • Only a handful of persistant offenders get through to me during the year. These girls will often lose access to different network resources (or at last resort their student device) for a set period. We firstly ask teachers to handle this sort of off-task behaviour as a classroom problem. Before I am involved the Head of Department (curriculum) and Head of House (pastoral) will be involved. I think our clear AUP does make a difference, as do active supervision of our teachers. Using skype during class is a problem at the moment. Teachers who have had problems with this are currently using LanSchool to stop the application being started on a student’s laptop

    • Always start with sound, inclusive educational methods and then have behaviour management and, if required, disciplinary processes up your sleeve.

      We have an online code of conduct and it is essential that this is maintained as an active and frequently visited set of guidelines – not just pulled out when someone is in trouble.
      You may find it useful to spend a lesson with the students coming up with a set of ground rules for the class – the underpinning principles of ground rules should be respect for all and for learning.

      I like the idea of using the sports contract context but I think this would come after the overall class expectations and ground rules had been worked on.

      See also my comments on Mel,Kristin,Elly,Chan post.

      Given that you find yourself in this situation, I would view the students behaviour as gravely inappropriate. It should be made very clear that the behaviour is inappropriate and contrary to the standard of the school and its community. At this stage the Acceptable Use Policy or Online Conduct should be used as a supporting document. It would be important when dealing with a problem like this that has already developed that students be made aware of the legal side of defaming others in the digital environment.

      If this were my class and the issue were widespread through the majority or a large proportion of the students I would invest time in re-establishing the principle of access as a privilege. I would at this stage be tempted to ask the IT Dept for a transcript of the email log to find out how much of the time the kids have been off task, although if I were actively supervising the class I would know this and have the students catch up time. I think I would deal with the inappropriate behaviour separately from the wasted time.

      Point 5 of John’s answer is important.

      • Thanks guys for reminding us that pedagogical solutions need to be tried first. I think we need to directly teach about digital citizenship issues as part of digital literacy programs in schools and DL segments in all curriculum area. To use a cliche, its all about educating the child frr the “real world” while meeting the demands of various curriculum documents.

  5. Scenario:
    I have set a Prezi task as an assessment item this term for my grade 6 class. A couple of students and parents have come to me explaining that they do not have internet access at home. I am giving them allocated class time, but obviously for full completion extra time at home would be needed.

    I am offering 1 lunch break a week access to the classroom. Due to playground duty and other school commitments, this is all I am able to offer. Library computers are accessible during lunch breaks, however I am finding that those children who utilise this are tired when coming back in after lunch as they have not had a break or lunch.

    What more can we do to provide access to these children?

    We believe this is a real and valid issue faced by teachers in schools. We obviously want every student to reach their full potential, but how can students achieve that when they are socio-economically disadvantaged?

    Corinne, Shannon, Leah and Lisa.

    • Hi Corinne/Shannon/Leah/Lisa

      This is a very real concern for all teachers. I have always planned for equity, even in my school where you would not expect to find socieconomically challenged students. Over 15 yrs ago we put in place at MBC laptops and then digital and video cameras that can be loaned from the library by students (either overnight or over a weekend). A few comments about your scenario above:

      1. Why not let the kids eat while they use the library PCs? If the librarian resists, take them to another area to use the internet.
      2. Find out where the nearest public library is for the kids involved and find the opening hours. Explain to parents and kids that they need time at the public library to complete the assignment.
      3. If they are at an EQ school with 1-to-1, the student laptops come with wireless dongle for internet connection out of school.
      4. If costs permit, buy a couple of non plan wireless dongles that you can put a pre-paid amount of downloads on. Loan these and a laptop to the disadvantaged students.
      5. Juggle your class time so the disadvantaged kids can have extra internet time in-class and then they do some non-internet tasks at home.
      6. Find some low cost internet wireless dongle options and talk to the students parents.

    • Add my comments here on the end of John’s ideas, which are great.
      If the whole point of the exercise is for students to learn Prezi then you have no option but to facilitate the student’s access to computers that are online. However if the student can use offline resources for the information processing part of the task but still needs to make a presentation that will be given on screen then give an alternative so that the student can still participate. Maybe using PowerPoint or the presentation tools available in any office suite (Open Office, Keynote etc).

      I have to say that often presentation software is over-used and often selected when presentation software is not the correct tool to pick, unless of course the purpose of the lesson is to learn how to use the software.

      Guide teachers to have a plan B and often a plan C to cater for the diversity of kids and the resources they have access to. Also help students to work on plan B and plan C’s so that their learning journey can continue even when the power is off and their house is surrounded by water – extreme I know but you get the point 🙂

  6. Hi John and Alex.

    Here’s our scenario…

    The students are in class and are required to complete a task on the computer, it has been observed that students working individually tend to stray off task with the temptations of other sites on the internet unrelated to the task required. Therefore, learning and teaching time is wasted on trivial tasks and not on the set task by the teacher.

    As a teacher when setting individual ICT tasks, what behaviour management are most effective and strategies to maximise the required learning throughout the allocated time?

    Our possible solutions could be establishing groups of students who all have various tasks to complete and directly teaching those working on the computers and the other solution was to block specific sites but it has been found that this can have implications on the sites required for research.
    Another alternative was to have the children present the research they had done at the end of the lesson but this could be impacted by the time allocated to the lesson.

    • Hi Mel,Kristin,Elly,Chan

      The key strategy I think is to create an engaging and enjoyable activity in the first place. Then during the activity constantly circulate in the room and interact with the students. Don’t give them time to get off task and pull them back immediately if they do.

      Think about when you were students. What sort of things were you doing when you went ‘off task’. What were your teachers like? Why did you go off task with some teachers more than others?

      If a student does persist in going off task then have an alternative activity ready for them. Remove them from the computer (sends a message to everyone) and get them to complete the alternative activity using good old pen and paper. Of course with a good classroom management tool you can also block the program that they might be using to go off task but this is of no good if its internet browsing that they are doing!

      • Thanks John really appreciate your time and experience. Your right internet access at school is still a privilage, and I would hope that I can product exciting classes that the children want to engage

    • This largely backs up what John has said.
      This is a great question. The situation haunts some teachers and causes a lot of stress.

      Here are some points
      1. make the task engaging – this is just part of good teaching anyway and nothing to do with technology
      2. make behaviour and work expectations clear and try to encourage the students to monitor their behaviour regularly. Be explicit and the kids will ‘get it’ (usually). I have been working with our teachers to introduce the Habits of Mind so we use these as part of the language in the class. Something like, “think back over the past 10 minutes, in your mind give yourself a score out of 10 for how well you have avoided being distracted”. ” Which Habits are you trying to use when you stay focussed on a task.”(Persistence and/or Managing Impulsivity) Then ask students to comment on any part of the task that they are finding hard to focus on. Don’t spend the whole lesson going over this, but if you make self monitoring a part of every lesson you are teaching the kids metacognition, which is another of the Habits of Mind.
      3. Expect students to be off track in a minor way at some time. Don’t overreact but do help the student refocus – this is part of our behaviour management method.
      4. Be up on your feet and actively monitoring and looking for teachable moments both to do with the content and the process of the lesson. If you do this you will find the need for blocking websites is far less.
      5. Options to differentiate the task for different abilities, interest and learning capabilities is a factor which can increase the effectiveness of the task and minimise off-task time.
      In the main if you give clear expectations, involve the students in the monitoring and decision making process of setting ground rules, actively supervise the students, have a supportive behaviour management and have a teaching and learning framework which supports useful dispositions to learning by the students, then you will find the majority of the issues you have in a class are a. not technology based and b. solved by good, old fashioned switched on good teaching practice. To be honest I usually steer teachers and our IT support staff away from using technology to monitor and maintain the learning environment as its unrealistic and moves the responsibility away from the student, away from the teacher and onto a poor old underpaid and overworked techie in a back-room somewhere in the bowels of the school.

      • Thanks for this Alex – its amazing how many times our questions are being answered with expectations of good pedagogy and clear instruction and high levels of engagement..

        Good solid advice on the management issues too. I hope all the team talk to their ICT coordinator in their school when they go on prac this time, because your advice in advance solves many problems.

  7. Hi John and Alex,

    We are a group of early childhood students that are curious about when to start explicitly teaching Digitial Citizenship?
    We haven’t seen any explicit teaching of Digital Citizenship in our experiences. Yet, we have seen early years students accessing the internet through direct links to educational games. As well as year two students begining to develop their foundations of Digital Citizenship for example, using powerpoint to communicate information found on the internet.

    Do you know of any strategies that we can implement in our future classrooms for our early years students to assist in becoming digital citizens?

    • Hi Alicia, Ryan, Kelsea, Kirstin

      At MBC we start teaching digital citizenship at prep level. The students come to us in most cases already users of PC/tablets.

      For a starter for content check out the great ACMA site:

      Lots of great ideas here.

      For planned activities check out:

      The NZ Netsafe program is also worth a good look.

    • A key point throughout the students journey is to bring the parents into the equation and to educate them. Not just in one-off grand presentations – although these do help – but in the routine way that the school communicates with its community.

      At Coomera Anglican College we have a calendar of events that include visiting speakers (The ACMA are good for this), activities that routinely go home as part of students’ homework, class activities that pastoral care teachers do with their students, presentations on school assemblies and online activities that students, staff and parents can contribute to.

      At every parent information evening I, or my eLearning Coordinator, ‘remind’ parents of online resources and key principles of regulating digital issues at home. Some of online suite of resources are applicable to adults, such as how to deal with online credit card security and avoiding online fraud. This helps to hook the adults in and helps them become aware of the resources that are available and categorised as suitable for young children, pre-teens, teens and young adults.

      We also have a component of student and parent education about digital issues within our issuing process for our student laptop scheme – this is comprised a short presentation and the signing of a conditions of use contract. This is also supported by a general conditions of use contract that is included in the College diary that all students are taken through at the beginning of the year.

      Getting parents involved is better the younger the kids are. The patterns that are set in the home through good parenting – the lack of which is often identified as an issue with student behaviour generally and digital behaviours specifically – make everyone’s life easier. Schools, for better or for worse, have to play their part in supporting parents in setting up their families for good digital behaviours. This is not to say that I advocate stepping into the role of taking responsibility for behaviours at home – this leads to issues like parents expecting schools to filter and monitor home internet usage which is difficult, inappropriate, legally iffy and encourages the transfer of responsibility from the family to the school – but our responsibility to educate must extend to some degree to the whole of our school community and not just the students while they are inside the school gates.

      I endorse the resources that John has listed. The NZ stuff is very good and you’ll find some good UK stuff online also.

      I’ll stop now, I’m rambling 🙂

  8. The resources around are very good and a teacher could never duplicate the quality of these,especially the multimedia resources, so using them is solid advice.

    For little kids, there is a gradual introduction to ideas and concepts. For example, helping students know what to do if they accidentally come across a site they know they should not see. I always remember Mike Ryan’s story about helping his children find out more about the movie Babe….. I think the apps revolution means young children want to download apps and they need to understand why mum has a password protecting downloads and he bank balance. The pedagogy at this age also needs to be about positive online interactions – maybe if you ran a travel buddy project and then you emphasised how your travel buddy writes in a friendly helpful manner etc etc. Now team (Alicia, Ryan, Kelsea, Kirstin), what would you think should be the opening concepts in digital citizenship young children could grasp?

    PS: I want to really stress how important you will be as the next wave of connected teachers to lead your colleagues in this – you can decide what young children need to know and do and you can write the curriculum history about this. I know you will meet this challenge – what a great opportunity for your assignment 2…..

  9. Hi,

    Thank you John and Alex for providing such great advice on this scenario. I think your expertise and experience speaks volumes and it seems that if the lessons and pedagogical approaches are well thought out and planned for then problems are more likely to be avoided. The idea of being sure to set very clear expectations with students as well as to interact with them throughout the task makes a lot of sense when trying to keep students engaged. Thank you,

  10. Pingback: Discussions with pre-service teachers on ICT use » Live 2 Learn

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