by Darlene Foley, Elementary Technology Integration Specialist, Google Educator Certified
Being a good digital citizen is no different than being a good citizen and showing that you’re responsible. As a member of a classroom, a sports team, or a family, we have responsibilities that include being kind, being respectful, and being safe. Regardless of where we are, those responsibilities are steadfast. It’s no different when we are online; those same responsibilities exist. This is the message that our elementary students have heard all year long and will continue to hear since technology is a part of every classroom and connected to so much of what we do on a daily basis.
Grades 4-6 have begun to dive a bit deeper into this topic of Digital Citizenship. In the last lesson students learned that when they text a simple message to a friend, post a photo on Instagram, or share a funny video on Vine, that they are creating a digital footprint and creating an image for themselves. Moreover, it’s a digital footprint and an image that they are responsible for and have control over. Students took some time to think about the image they’d like to uphold when working on the (non) digital footprint project shown on the right. This lesson provided a great opportunity to show students a Common Sense Media video that underscores the permanency of digital information and how it can impact their image. I urge parents to watch it with their 4-6th grade child and to discuss how students plan to create a positive digital image for themselves whether it’s through social media apps or working collaboratively on Google Drive for an assignment.