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A Closer Look @ Digital Citizenship

Digital Citizenship Arrow
Anna ISD

With a rapid increase in technology, there are more opportunities at one’s fingertips. There is no “go look it up” in the dictionary, instead it’s “Google it”. The internet has provided opportunity since it’s time being born. However, are we so crazed about technology that we forget our digital manners? It’s quite common to log onto Facebook and see a political rant shared by a friend, a viral video of a 13-year-old girl getting mouthy on Dr. Phil’s show, or a pretty boy “squad” dancing to the newest hip hop song on the charts. One thing that has been forgotten is limits. Social media users have become addicted to the thought that they are invincible behind a computer screen or smartphone. Users have become so strongly opinionated that they do not think before they post.

I see 4th grade students walking around logged into every popular social media app connecting with other users. When did we forget to teach how to properly use technology? We don’t forget to teach our children and students how to use the restroom, we don’t forget to teach how to write a name, and we don’t forget to teach classroom and home expectations. As an educator, it extremely important to connect with students and to address classroom procedures and expectations to have a complete understanding. Why are we not teaching digital expectations? Students of all ages are craving the relief of freedom—in which they receive in technology. They can post, share, like, follow, tweet, swipe, and click with no limit, so what’s stopping them?

In today’s classrooms technology is being integrated in many different ways. Students are enjoying to have a choice of their own. With a choice, comes responsibility.

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Integrating digital citizenship into the classroom is essential for students, because students may not realize the consequences of their actions on the web. There are many sites that leave a digital footprint. Even though you can delete, set to private, or save—there is still a footprint that an action took place. Many social media sites are available to the public. The same sites allow access to change privacy settings, but make it difficult to manage. Digital citizenship is the act of responsibility and appropriate use of technology on social media. If a person is responsible enough to post it, they can be responsible enough to accept the consequences.

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