EGUSD Digital Citizenship

Resources for 21st Century Teaching and Learning

EGUSD Digital Citizenship

Archives for Common Sense Media

Technology and Students’ Mental Health in the Age of COVID-19

It has been over a year since the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic, and a lot has changed in our world. It has become mandatory for people of all ages to use digital platforms to communicate with others and complete basic tasks for school and work. Coupled with this increase in technology use, we have seen an increase in mental health challenges for young people.  A recent study completed by Common Sense Media in conjunction with Hopelab and the California Health Care Foundation suggests that technology has played a key role in providing support and resources for young people who are experiencing these mental health challenges.  

Student with tablet

The report, Coping with COVID-19: How Young People Use Digital Media to Manage Their Mental Health states that “depression rates have increased significantly since 2018, especially among teens and young adults who have had coronavirus infections in their homes.”  The study cites the increase in the percentage of young people who report moderate to severe depressive symptoms (up from 25% in 2018 to 38% in 2020) and explores the role that technology can play in supporting these young people. It explains that young people have increased their use of digital health resources by connecting with their health practitioners online and seeking information about topics that include COVID-19, fitness, anxiety, stress, and depression. The report states that,  “Forty percent of young people have looked online for “health peers,” or people with similar health concerns to their own.” 

The study also examines the role social media plays in the lives of young people, including those with moderate to severe depressive symptoms.  The researchers found that young people who are experiencing moderate to severe depressive symptoms use social media more frequently than their peers.  These young people stated that they use social media to get inspiration from others, feel less alone, and get support or advice when needed. One study participant said, “I just wanted to see how other people dealt with their stress, especially with school and how they balance it all. It helped me to see that I wasn’t alone in my anxiety, and that there are better ways to deal with anxiety rather than just pushing it to the back burner.”

Not all participants had a positive experience with technology and social media.  For the 5% of the participants in the study who reported having severe depressive symptoms, social media caused increased stress and anxiety.  Still, for a majority of participants, technology gave them access to the information and support they were seeking. 

For more information, check out the following resources:

For families who are seeking ways to support the mental well being of their children, check out the following Elk Grove Unified School District resources:

Digital Citizenship Week – October 19–23, 2020

Digital Citizenship Week

Common Sense Media sums it up in one sentence…

“This year more than ever, we are all digital citizens.”

While the transition from in-person learning to distance learning has been challenging for everyone, EGUSD teachers have already shared that online learning has led to impactful conversations about digital citizenship in the online classroom communities they have created. 

Digital Citizenship Week starts on Monday, October 19 and there’s no better time for teachers and parents/guardians to help students learn how to participate safely and responsibly online. 

All EGUSD schools are getting ready to submit their 2020-21 Digital Citizenship Site Implementation Plans to explain how they will incorporate digital citizenship into their core curriculum, Zoom and Google Meet sessions. 

If you are looking for resources to help support your students/children, Common Sense has created a wonderful web page for Digital Citizenship Week. It includes activities for elementary, middle and high school students and families. You can also follow @CommonSenseEd on Twitter to participate in all of the Digital Citizenship Week fun through social media.

Nearpod and Flocabulary have also curated free resources for Digital Citizenship Week.

On top of Digital Citizenship Week, October is also National Bullying Prevention and Character Education Month. EGUSD and the California Department of Education (CDE) have many bullying/cyberbullying prevention and character education resources available online that tie all three events together. We encourage you to check them out.

Our EGUSD Curriculum and Professional Learning Department has also created some ready to use Character Education lesson plans for EGUSD staff that include Common Sense lessons aligned to each pillar of character. Students will have the opportunity to share their ideas through word clouds.  As students complete lessons, each letter below will be updated using the words of students and classes from across our district. We are a diverse community working together to be trustworthy, caring, responsible, fair, and respectful citizens.

EGUSD Word Cloud

We encourage you to continue challenging your students/children to practice digital citizenship in their daily lives – whether it be for class assignments or while hanging out with their friends through online gaming or social media. 

As always, if you have any questions, comments or resources to share, please leave a comment below. 

Navigating Election News/Media – Preparing Students to Become Informed & Engaged Voters

On Sept. 1, 2020 the EGUSD Board of Education passed Resolution No. 15 – High School Voter Education Weeks declaring September 14‐25, 2020, as High School Voter Education Weeks – encouraging schools throughout EGUSD to participate in programs and activities that help get eligible students registered to vote, while encouraging others to become informed and passionate citizens committed to being active voters once they reach voting age.

Just as the act of voting is such an important part of civic life, so, too, are the traits that make for an educated voter so critical – traits such as discernment, thoughtful deliberation, fair assessment, and the desire to be fully informed on the issues before casting a ballot.

In a recent survey of young voters conducted by Common Sense, they found that only about a quarter of 18- to 29-year-olds say they know where to get unbiased information about issues and candidates. 

From deepfakes and misinformation campaigns to political ads and biased news coverage, it’s difficult to cut through the noise to find the facts. And with social media platforms allowing the spread of false information to go unchecked, it’s harder than ever to know what’s true—especially about the upcoming election and key issues.

We are excited to share that Common Sense just launched the Young Voter’s Guide to Social Media and the News: to help give all voters, and especially young voters, the resources and tools necessary to separate fact from fiction and make sense of election news and social media coverage. This new comprehensive guide provides everything from conversation starters to lesson plans to help parents, students, teachers, and community members:

  • Get inspired to make a difference
  • Consider all the ways you can make an impact this election.
  • Browse lesson plans to help your students make sense of social media and the news.
  • Get tips for talking to your teen about voting and the election process

“Media literate youth and adults are better able to understand the complex messages we receive from television, radio, internet, newspapers, magazines, books, billboards, video games, music, and all other forms of media.” – Media Literacy Project

Please also check out our EGUSD Digital Citizenship Media Literacy page for additional resources. As always, if you have additional resources to share, please drop a comment below. 

Digital Citizenship Week 2019 – So Many Possibilities…

Mark your calendars: Digital Citizenship Week 2019 is October 14-18.

Digital Citizenship Week

All of our EGUSD Digital Citizenship Site Coordinators have been busy submitting their site implementation plans for the 2019-2020 school year, and we are encouraged to see that there have been some big changes over last year’s plans. We asked the question – If your site has not yet shifted from teaching digital citizenship as a stand-alone to weaving it into subject areas, how do you plan to make that transition?

We invite you to explore some of the below resources, which may inspire you to try something new during Digital Citizenship Week.

How will your students, staff and families celebrate this annual event? We would love to showcase #DigCit activities happening at our schools. From lessons, to activities, to guest speakers – please keep us in the loop with whatever you are planning.

If you are looking for ideas, Common Sense is always our first go-to resource. Checkout their Digital Citizenship Week 2019 page, which highlights new lessons and resources to help ignite classroom conversations during Digital Citizenship Week and throughout the school year. Note: If you don’t already have a Common Sense account, it will take you only a minute to set one up. You will need to be logged in to download their lessons.

Ask your primary students to share one takeaway from We the Digital Citizens.

Empower your middle school students with ideas for dealing with Digital Drama Unplugged.

Challenge your high school students to confront Hate Speech Online.

Bring your teachers and administrators into a conversation on digital citizenship as a stand-alone topic vs. digital citizenship as an integral part of the core curriculum. We love a recent question raised by Rocklin USD’s Ryan O’Donnell (@creativeedtech) and PLESD’s Brian Briggs (@bribriggs): Is Digital Citizenship like teaching Family Life?

Many parents are not well versed on ever-changing digital citizenship issues and topics and all things social media. There is an absolute need for a home-to-school partnership in educating our students in what it means to be positive, contributing citizens in all the communities to which they belong – both face-to-face and online.  Digital Citizenship skills go well beyond competency in using a Chromebook. We all need to learn how to navigate a variety of topics and this can’t be done in a single lesson. It makes sense to integrate Digital Citizenship focus areas into core curriculum lessons. Below are some examples:

All Subjects:

  • Media Literacy – How do we check sources for credibility when doing online research? Sample lesson: Hoaxes and Fakes 
  • Digital Footprint – How can we ensure that our online lives are leaving a positive digital trail? Sample lesson: Our Online Tracks


History/Social Science/Current Events:

We’ve come to realize that we all need digital citizenship and media literacy skills along with tips for protecting our online privacy. We appreciate all the resources Common Sense offers parents. We would also like to acknowledge several other organizations for their invaluable #digcit resources for adults:

  • Cyberbullying Research Center – Researchers Sameer Hinduja and Justin Patchin continually update their findings on cyberbullying. Their resources for educators range from creating a positive school climate to understanding the alarming rise in sexting.
  • ISTE (International Society for Technology in Education) – A year ago, ISTE CEO Richard Culatta made an on-going commitment to keep digital citizenship at the forefront on technology integration via #digcitcommit. ISTE has also woven digital citizenship into their Technology Standards.
  • iKeepSafe – The Internet Keep Safe Coalition© (iKeepSafe) certifies digital products as compliant with state and federal requirements for handling protected personal information.
  • The Privacy Project – From the New York Times, this is a great online newsletter for updates on a variety of privacy issues.

If you are available on Wednesday, October 16, we hope you can join the EGUSD team for the 7th Annual Stand Up, Speak Out Against Bullying Rally. This event is sponsored by the OCA and the Sacramento Regional Coalition for Tolerance and will be held at the California Museum’s Unity Center. This year, 6th grade students from Roy Herburger Elementary will participate in the youth rally.  Click here to see highlights from last year’s event.

Stand Up Speak Out Event

Stand Up Speak Out! 7th Annual Youth Rally
Wednesday, October 16, 2018
8:30 – 11:30 a.m.
CA Museum – Unity Center
1020 O Street, Downtown Sacramento

We are looking forward to showcasing what our schools are doing, including how they celebrated Digital Citizenship Week, part of National Bullying Prevention MonthPlease add to the conversation and resources by leaving a comment below.

“Digital citizens think critically about what they see online, understand the benefits and risks of sharing information, and balance screen time with other activities. But digital citizens aren’t born—they’re taught by teachers like you!” Common Sense

#DigCit in the 2019-2020 School Year

As students and staff settle into the school year, we thought we’d share some of the new resources we’ve gathered over the summer, from attending the ISTE 2019 (International Society for Technology Education) Conference, to Common Sense releasing their new curriculum. Once again digital citizenship is brought to the forefront.

We are honored and excited to have played a role in the development of media literacy resources via our connection with Common Sense Education. An example would be Hoaxes and Fakes – a 9th grade lesson that pulls from our 2016 Saturday Seminar – Digital Kids, Digital Classrooms session on fake news.

While this lesson can be taught as a stand-alone, it can also be integrated into a science, English or history/social studies class to bring an awareness to media literacy as an essential skill for today’s research projects.

Fact vs. Fiction

Fact VS. Fiction: Teaching Critical Thinking Skills in the Age of Fake News includes examples from a variety of educators (elementary through higher ed) who demonstrate how to tackle fake news with students and colleagues. We’ve added an (autographed) copy of Jennifer Lagarde and Darren Hudgins’ book to our digital citizenship library.

We would also like the share a recent video on #deepfakes from U.C. Berkeley Professor Hany Farid:

Farid created this eight minute crash course on detecting “fakery” in photos and videos as a resource for grades 5 through adult.

You might enjoy putting the skills and tips Farid has shared into action by playing the below games:

  • Factitious – A fast-moving game, players swipe left when they think the article in front of them is fake, and right when they believe it’s real (Developed by American University Game Lab)
  • – Game challenges you to see if you can tell a real face from an A.I. fake. (Developed by Jevin West and Carl Bergstrom of the University of Washington)
  • Mind Over Media: Analyzing Contemporary Propaganda – A “user-generated content website” for teaching and learning about propaganda. Students and teachers are invited to upload and share samples of propaganda from their own communities. (Developed by Media literacy advocate and author Renee Hobbs)

When is your brain ready for social media? – Common Sense, KQED and PBS have collaborated on a video to bring awareness to what rights students are giving up when they “Accept” the terms of use for 13+ apps, games, etc. The video could be a great conversation starter on privacy issues.

Common Sense continues to create wonderful resources to bring parents into digital citizenship conversations. We love the new Tech Balance app for parents of 3-8 year-olds. Parents can receive free text message tips about how their family can practice healthy media habits at home. Common Sense’s Research section is continually updated with “reliable, independent data on children’s use of media and technology and the impact it has on their physical, emotional, social, and intellectual development.”

Tech Balance

If you’ve found any new resources over the summer for us to take a look at, please reach out via comments below.

Wishing everyone a great start to the new school year.

#CUE19 – A few #DigCit takeaways

Attending a CUE conference is always worth the 9-hour drive from Elk Grove, CA to Palm Springs, CA. Last week’s #CUE19 three-day conference delivered on the promise to provide “dozens of workshops – hundreds of sessions – countless memories” – along with a number of digital citizenship/media literacy takeaways:

Got DigCit? 

As the co-directors of EGUSD’s Digital Citizenship Program, we really value opportunities to learn about ways other districts are weaving #DigCit into the school day, so we were excited to attend Ben Cogswell and Norma Gamez’s session.

If you check out their presentation, you will see that in addition to pulling lessons and resources from Common Sense and other organizations, they even create their own:

They also brought up a good point on the two ways we need to be rolling out digital citizenship – Explicit: Planned Lessons and Emergent: In the Moment:

planned lesson vs. in the moment

We’re looking forward to attending Ben and Norma’s session at Monterey Bay CUE’s May 18 DigCit Summit in Salinas, CA.

Session 5: Thinking Critically about the (Fake) News

It’s always a privilege to join Rob Appel and Kelly Mendoza for a #DigCit/#MediaLiteracy presentation. We were excited to present to a packed room full of educators enthusiastic about gathering new resources for this rapidly changing topic.

Thinking Critically Presentation

Over the past year, we have continued to update and add to our media literacy resources, with the goal of providing tips for helping students (and ourselves) step out of “filter bubbles,” use effective search skills, and become fact-checking pros (and lateral readers).

If you didn’t make it to our session, here’s the link to our session resources. We hope you can join us at the May 18 #DigCit Summit.

Can I Use That? Exploring Copyright, Fair Use, and Creative Commons 

If you were one of our participants, thank you for your great questions and your interest in the topic. We wish this had been a 90-minute session. It’s always a challenge to pack all the information into an hour.

As essential as this topic is to media literacy/digital citizenship programs, we are finding that educators are still not feeling fully confident of their understanding of copyright, their ability to flex their fair use muscles, and their understanding of Creative Commons best practices. It was exciting at the end of our session to have a number of participants ask if they could use our presentation … the following Monday.

In addition to offering our sessions at national conferences, making sure Elk Grove Unified teachers and administrators have options within the district to attend our workshops is a top priority. We will be updating the ERO schedule soon with our next round of workshops and will also post the dates, times, and locations here on the website.

“I think the classroom teacher has a unique opportunity to introduce media literacy concepts and critical thinking questions every time they teach with images, film, video, news, advertising and the Internet.” Frank Baker, Media Literacy Clearinghouse

Online Challenges and Social Media

The purpose of this post is to inform you about the student “challenges” being shared throughout social media. Our student’s well-being and safety remains a top priority, and as a Common Sense Media certified district in digital citizenship, we want to make you aware of specific “challenges” noted in an article published by that have caused concern in many school districts.

According to the article, specific “challenges” are trending among teens, going viral on social media and, “these stunts range from harmless to horrifying.” Below are some of the “horrifying challenges” that you should be aware of: (Article: 13 Online Challenges Your Kid Already Knows About, written by CSM’s Senior Editor of Parent Education, Christine Elgersma.)

Frightening Challenges

  • Momo Challenge
  • Choking/Fainting/Pass-Out Challenge
  • Tide Pod Challenge
  • Blue Whale Challenge

What to Do About Addressing These Challenges with Your Child

  • Talk about it.
  • Get them to think.
  • Acknowledge peer pressure.
  • Stay (somewhat) up to date.
  • Model responsible online habits.

Besides the resources available here on our Digital Citizenship website, the following District PBIS resources are available for you to use to assist you in speaking with your child about maintaining healthy bodies, healthy minds and healthy learning:

If you have any questions or concerns, we encourage you to contact your school or reach out to EGUSD Student Services (916) 686-7780.

#DigCit Tweet Chat

We’ve marked our calendars for 5:00 pm (PST), February 6, to join Illinois #FutureReady librarian and author Kristen Mattson for the #michED Tweet chat on digital citizenship.

Tweet chats are public conversations, via Twitter, connected by a unique hashtag (#). No matter where you are teaching, digital citizenship conversations have much in common. In fact, many of our best #digcit resources have come from fellow educators outside our district. Likewise, lessons and resources we’ve created have been shared nationally and even globally.

If you haven’t participated in a Tweet chat before, we can promise you it’s a fast-moving hour. For that reason, we’re drafting our responses to Kristen’s seven questions (see graphic below) in advance so we can fully focus on the chat.

Each of the seven chat questions invites discussion at a global, national, district or school site level, starting with Q1. The challenge is to limit your answers to 280 characters (the maximum number of characters allowed by Twitter).

Q1: To help develop a shared understanding of ‘digital citizenship’ as a concept, please complete this sentence:

I want my students to be digital citizens who can/are ____________.

A1: We want our students to be digital citizens who are ready and willing to confront hate speech & other acts of intolerance by crossing the line from bystander to upstander, changing school culture and climate where/when needed. #michED

Q2: Who “owns” digital citizenship lessons in your school or district? When/where are students receiving these lessons?

A2: We are starting to see a shift in our district from #DigCit being taught as stand alone lessons during advisory period or computer lab time to a more integrated approach. We are also reaching out to see if/how other districts hold students accountable for #digcit. #michED

Q3: A lot of digital citizenship curriculum focuses on personal behaviors over skill development. What are some of the skills digital citizens need to be successful in global communities? How are you helping students gain those skills?

A3: Using technology to take student voices beyond the classroom and zip code is exciting. Today through blogging, videoconferencing, VoiceThreading, etc., students can effectively read, write and communicate with authentic audiences on topics they care about. #michED

Q4: Digital citizens should have opportunities to explore digital ethics. For example, “Should the government be able to access data collected by private companies?” What areas of digital ethics do you think students should explore?

A4: Although protecting online privacy is one of four main themes for our district #digcit program, this year we’re putting a focus on protecting student data privacy. The sample question is a great one to spark classroom conversations and drive interest-based research. #michED

Q5: A hot topic in digital citizenship right now is balance. How do you balance time online and off? What does “balance” mean to you? How might you help students reflect on their digital practices and achieve a healthy balance?

A5: We’re trying to find that balance ourselves. If we were in the classroom, we might share a “screen time diet” plan, starting with cutting back on the number of times we check our phones. We also use iOS/Android screen time weekly stats. #michED

Q6: Reflect on your own knowledge and abilities as a teacher of digital citizens. What is one way you can grow this year? How might you go about improving your content knowledge or practice?

A6: In 2018, #MediaLiteracy for students was a top priority. In 2019, #MediaLiteracy/#DigCit for adults is a priority. We could all benefit from a #MediaLit skill set. Would love to hear what others are doing on this topic. #michED

Q7. What are some of your favorite resources for teaching digital citizens? Hit us up with links to activities, blog posts, books and more.

A7: We are proud to be a Common Sense district, which puts Common Sense at the top of our list. We love the range of relevant resources for parents, students and teachers, covering all areas of #DigCit. #michED

A7: For the latest research on cyberbullying,  we appreciate Sameer Hinduja and Justin Patchin continually updating the Cyberbullying Research Center website. #michED

A7: For tips on protecting student data privacy, we like the Connect Safely’s Parent Guide  and Common Sense’s Tips for Teachers short video. #michED

We’re looking forward to joining and learning from Wednesday’s #michED chat. We invite our EGUSD Digital Citizenship Coordinators to join us.  For those of you who participated in our January Saturday Seminar workshop: Twitter, the Best PD on the Planet, this is a great opportunity for putting your new Twitter skills into practice.

If you cannot join the live chat, you can follow up on the conversation anytime by searching #michED on Twitter.

Hope to see you Wednesday.

New Curriculum for Empowering Students to Protect Their Online Privacy

Last Sunday, we had the opportunity to attend the EdTechTeam Google Summit at Roseville High School, where we learned about Google’s Applied Digital Skills Curriculum.

This newest project from the EdTechTeam has three big selling points: The lessons are correlated to ISTE Standards and Integrated with Google Classroom, with an emphasis on digital citizenship. The lessons address timely, relevant topics (e.g., from conducting research and writing a report – to creating a budget spreadsheet) and are easily adaptable to a range of grade levels (including adults) and subject areas.

So far, we have explored the If-Then Adventure Story unit, which fits beautifully into both English/Language Arts as well as History/Social Science. This weekend, during our What You Should Know Before Clicking “I Accept” Saturday Seminar session for EGUSD staff, we’ll be sharing the Technology, Ethics, and Security lesson.

Sample lesson from Google's Applied Digital Skills.

Sample lesson from Google’s Applied Digital Skills.


The lesson objectives begin with an emphasis on protecting student privacy:

  • Explore all sides of the topic they choose related to technology, ethics, and security
  • Explain technology’s risks and dangers, and consider solutions to keep users safe
  • Plan and employ effective research strategies to locate information and other resources for their intellectual or creative pursuits
  • Publish or present content that customizes the message and medium for their intended audiences

We are impressed with the Applied Digital Skills Curriculum for both the digital citizenship connections and the real-life connections. If you pilot any of the lessons, we would welcome and value any feedback on the program. Please jump in with comments.

Did you Know?

Did you know that Monday, January 28, 2019 is Data Privacy Day“Millions of people are unaware of and uninformed about how their personal information is being used, collected or shared in our digital society. Data Privacy Day aims to inspire dialogue and empower individuals and companies to take action.” – Stay Safe Online, National Cyber Security Alliance (NCSA)

We are continuing our efforts to provide resources on this important topic and focus area (Protecting Online Privacy) of our digital citizenship program.  Stay Safe Online has some great resources, including an eye-catching, informative infographic. To see the expanded infographic, click on the image below.

Data Privacy Day Infographic

“Personal Information is like money. Value it. Protect it.”  –

It’s exciting to see a growing bank of resources that addresses a timely topic. We appreciate the work that Common Sense and Google have put into developing engaging lessons. Please let us know if you have additional resources to share.


EGUSD Educators #DigCitCommit for #DigCitWeek

Educators throughout Elk Grove Unified guided and supported students through numerous #DigCitWeek activities. Some of the activities represent projects that students will continue their involvement in throughout the school year, while other activities were specifically inspired by the October 15-19 Digital Citizenship Week timeframe.

As you can see from the samples below, elementary, middle and high school students and staff celebrated this national event.

Harriet Eddy Students attend SF Google Headquarters

Harriet Eddy and Katherine Albiani Middle Schools – #ICANHELP

At many of our middle schools, students have attended or will be attending, #ICANHELP rallies. #ICANHELP is a national organization dedicated to helping tweens and teens use social media for good. At Harriet Eddy MS, a team of students recently traveled to San Francisco Google Headquarters to participate in a day where “world changers, transformation seekers, and positivity makers” met to celebrate student voice and digital leadership. #digital4good

“During my time at the #digital4good workshop, I learned many new things and was inspired in different ways.  I learned that it’s extremely important to be smart and have a positive presence online… During our gathering I thought to myself on how I could bring the positivity kids have brought to their schools, to mine. One example I thought about was sticky noting teachers cars and doors with positive things along with starting a club at our school to overall just spread #digital4good.  This workshop also inspired me to bring good to my school because when I saw all the amazing things kids have done to create a better environment, I believed that if they did what I never imagined possible,  I must be able to do it too.  Overall the gathering for #digital4good was an amazing experience and showed me many different stories.” – Beck, 8th Grade – HEMS

Roy Herburger and Sierra Enterprise Elementary SchoolsStand Up Speak Out! Against Bullying Youth Rally

We had the opportunity to attend this past Wednesday’s 6th Annual Stand Up Speak Out! Against Bullying Youth Rally at the California Museum’s Unity Center with students from Roy Herburger and Sierra Enterprise Elementary Schools.

The Unity Center is a dedicated space for celebrating California’s “diverse people, customs and cultures.” The annual rally has been a long-time priority for Sacramento Mayor Darrell Steinberg. His coalition brings together Sacramento school districts to educate students on the importance of taking a stand against bullying/cyberbullying and all forms of intolerance.

EGUSD Students line up to get into the CA Museum Unity Center

Students are greeted by Museum docents as they enter the Unity Center. 

Through the center’s interactive media exhibits, advocacy tools and educational programs, visitors are empowered to be Unity Activists, exercising their rights and standing up for the rights of others.

Sierra Enterprise Students at the CA Museum Unity Center

Stand Up Speak Out! Against Bullying Youth Rally

Students from Sierra Enterprise Elementary shared their takeaways from the day…

“It doesn’t matter whether you are black, white, Asian, Arab, Hispanic, gay, straight, bi, Christian, atheist, Muslim, Jewish, skinny, fat, tall, short, male, female, where you live, who you live with, what you like to do, or anything in between – I don’t care, as long as you’re a good person, we’ll get along just fine.”  – Miricah, 6th Grade

“The most important thing I learned was that anyone and everyone can make a difference.” – Teresa, 6th Grade

“I learned how important it is to stand up and speak out against bullying. Be kind and treat each other with respect.” – Faith, 6th Grade

“Being there made me think that I’m lucky to be in the school I’m in because in my school they teach all of us how to be kind. I’m glad my school is bullying free.” – Karol, 6th Grade

Markofer Elementary Mustang News – Video Creation

We’ve long recognized that the most powerful teaching method is students teaching students, especially around issues of bullying/cyberbullying. The 6th Grade Morning News Team at Markofer Elementary have stepped up, focusing on digital citizenship themes, to produce a set of videos available to their classmates and beyond via their YouTube channel. Although Markofer teacher Tammy Null is a master at making the best of what equipment she has gathered, her in-classroom studio was given a needed upgrade this year with a SEVA grant through SECC – Our local Sacramento Educational Cable Consortium.

One of the topics Markofer students addressed for #DigCitWeek was the importance of building a positive digital footprint.

Joseph Kerr Middle School – #DigCitWeek Daily Discussion/Action Starters and Video Creation
Joseph Kerr Middle School students participated in daily discussions based on digital/global topics provided by Activities Director Chris Perris.

  • Monday – The Power of a Positive Post: Take a minute to tell us why #JKMSRocks
  • Trustworthy Tuesday: Take some time and do legitimate research online on something that interests you or one of your friends. Use a reliable news source and tell someone about it.

Fake News

  • World Wide Wednesday:  Learn about a problem going on in the world currently and think of ways you could contribute to ending it and if possible put that idea into action.
  • Think It Over Thursday: Take only 5 minutes out of your day and learn about some of the positives and negatives of social media to help keep you out of trouble.
  • Fab Friday: Leave one of your friends a message telling them how good of a person they are and what they mean to you.

JKMS Leadership students, under Chris’s supervision, took things one step further. They decided to take on rumors and fake news as a topic for their upcoming short film. Below is a behind the scenes photo – we will be posting a link once their editing is completed.

JKMS Leadership Students

Herman Leimbach Elementary – VoiceThread
The Make Your Mark VoiceThread is from a group of 2nd graders, who reflected on the Peter H. Reynolds’ award-winning story The Dot by creating their own Dot stories, using Google Slides as their drafting board and then importing the slides into a VoiceThread – and in the process, began building a positive digital footprint for their ePortfolios. The students also put into practice, with no prompting from Computer Resource Teacher (CRT) Cathe Petuya, how to respectfully comment and add to an online conversation.

Maeola Beitzel and Irene B. West Computer Labs – Student Activities
CRT Ken Lagomarsino taught Betizel students grade-level appropriate “Quick-Start Activities” from Common Sense, providing every student the opportunity to earn – and proudly display – their  “Digital Passport and Digital Compass” badges.

Fourth grade students at Irene B. West had the opportunity to participate in Google’s Interland Challenge during CRT Uyen Villa’s computer lab sessions.  

Every student in grades 3-6 explored the four interactive worlds in Interland and earned their certificates, proving themselves to Be Internet Awesome Each land focuses on a fundamental skill that is key to becoming good digital citizens.

  • Kind Kingdom – It’s Cool to Be Kind
  • Reality River – Don’t Fall for Fake
  • Mindful Mountain – Share with Care
  • Tower of Treasure – Secure Your Secrets

Uyen’s students shared a few thoughts about what they learned in the Interland Challenge.

“In Interland, I learned to be kind to everyone and help make the internet a better place by reporting bullying or teasing.  I also learned to stay safe online by not telling private information to strangers and to watch out for scams, fake messages, and other suspicious looking games and websites online.”  – Leiann May, 4th Grade

“I have learned it’s important to have a strong password. The Kind Land also taught me it’s important to be kind and not a bully.”– Bao, 4th Grade

Monterey Trail High School – Media Literacy
Media literacy was the focus over at MTHS for #DigCitWeek, with librarian Karin Ledford leading the charge. Each day of the week, she provided teachers with links to lessons and resources by sending out a daily template with a media literacy Word/Phrase of the Day, an Article of the Day, a Video of the Day, a Fake Website of the Day and a Fake News Story of the Day for teachers to pull from to use in their classrooms.

Media Literacy at MTHS Google Doc

Las Flores – Staff Training/Copyright
An email from teacher Joan Siddens reminded us that it’s not just students who need to be aware of digital citizenship issues and resources. Teachers also need training. With fake news being front and center, and cyberbullying on the rise, we all need to be teaching and practicing good digital citizenship. Joan reached out to us for permission to pull some content from our copyright/fair use and media literacy resources to use in her presentation for an upcoming staff meeting.

Las Flores Staff Training on Copyright

We at Elk Grove Unified celebrated another successful Digital Citizenship Week. We were happy to share (boast about) good things happening at our schools during a recent national webinar sponsored by EdWeb, Common Sense and ISTE that we participated in as presenters. As we shared specific examples of #DigCit in action, people from all over the world joined in the chatroom, leaving very positive comments and praising our teachers for the work they do. Participating in the Stand Up Speak Out! Against Bullying Youth Rally was the high point of #DigCitWeek for us and reinforced our #DigCitCommit for the 2018-19 school year.

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