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Making Media Literacy Central to Digital Citizenship

KQED News Mind/Shift – Tanner Higgin

“It’s easy to get caught up in the hype around the latest and greatest classroom tech, from video games to 3-D printers to Raspberry Pi kits to VR to AR and beyond. The reality is that kind of tech — expensive, bleeding-edge tools — makes headlines but doesn’t make it into many classrooms, especially the most needy ones. What does, however, is video. While we often get distracted by the latest device or platform release, video has quietly been riding the wave of all of these advancements, benefiting from broader access to phones, displays, cameras and, most importantly, bandwidth. In fact, 68 percent of teachers are using video in their classrooms, and 74 percent of middle schoolers are watching videos for learning. From social media streams chock-full of video and GIFs to FaceTime with friends to two-hour Twitch broadcasts, video mediates students’ relationships with each other and the world. Video is a key aspect of our always-online attention economy that’s impacting voting behavior, and fueling hate speech and trolling. Put simply: Video is a contested civic space.”(more)

What Your Students Really Need to Know About Digital Citizenship

Edutopia – Staff Writer

“In my classroom, I use two essential approaches in the digital citizenship curriculum that I teach: proactive knowledge and experiential knowledge… I want my students to know the “9 Key Ps” of digital citizenship. While I go into these Ps in detail in my book Reinventing Writing, here are the basics: 1. Passwords: Do students know how to create a secure password? Do they know that email and online banking should have a higher level of security and never use the same passwords as other sites? Do they have a system like LastPass for managing passwords, or a secure app where they store this information?.”(more)

Three Ways Parents Can Make Digital Media a Positive for Young Kids

KQED News Mind/Shift – Katrina Schwartz

“Digital technologies have added a new element of anxiety to family life for many parents. A lot of kids now have access to mobile devices, which brings up parent concerns that kids aren’t learning to interact with people, spend too much time on devices and no longer play outside. Often parents are most concerned about their young children spending time on devices because they know the early years are a crucial time for a child’s brain development. But at the same time, parents are often just as addicted to technology as their children, constantly checking phones for news, work and fun. The discussion around the best way to handle mobile devices is a good one to continue, but Sara DeWitt of PBS Kids Digital says some of parents’ deepest fears could be holding them back from seeing the potential of digital technology.”(more)

From Analog to Digital: Why and How to Teach Students to Write for an Online Audience

Ed Surge – Michael Hernandez

“When was the last time you wrote an essay? When was the last time you read one other than for grading? Now think about the frequency with which you read online articles, blogs, social media posts or listen to podcasts that inspire you or provide new information and perspectives. When did you last watch YouTube to figure out how to do something complicated, from cross stitch to car repair? If you’re like me, you’ve done much of your reading and learning through some kind of digital publishing platform—because it’s easy, accessible and often free. Whether text, video or something else entirely, each of these mediums encompasses a form of writing.”(more)

Think 21st-century learning is digital-only? Think again

E-School News – Ted Levine

“Every year, educational technology companies introduce new platforms, devices, and apps, all of which bring exciting new possibilities for teaching and learning. It is difficult—perhaps impossible—to find a school that has not adopted at least some form of digital learning into its curriculum, and many schools have made the shift to an entirely digital learning experience.”(more)

How to assess your district’s digital readiness

E-School News – Keith R. Krueger

“How do you know if your school system is high performing in its use of technology? What are your strengths and weaknesses? While there are many free, self-assessments, how do you get a rigorous, outside expert assessment? A first step is for districts to learn about CoSN’s new Digital Leap Success Matrix (Matrix) which outlines the practices needed to be a successful digital school system. And, CoSN has created a new fee-for-service CoSN Peer Review process using this Matrix to determine how a district aligns to best practices by expert external peers.”(more)