EGUSD Digital Citizenship

Resources for 21st Century Teaching and Learning

EGUSD Digital Citizenship

Archives for Professional Development

#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

National U.S. “Media Literacy Week” – November 6-10, 2017

NAMLE National Association for Media Literacy Education Logo
This week we join the
National Association for Media Literacy Education (NAMLE) in celebrating National Media Literacy Week. 

National Media Literacy Week Graphic

Organizations, schools, educators and Media Literacy Week partners from all over the country have partnered with NAMLE to participate in events including #MediaLitWk classroom lessons, virtual events, online chats, screenings, PSA’s, panel discussions and more. 

What is media literacy?
“Media Literacy is the ability to ACCESS, ANALYZE, EVALUATE, COMMUNICATE and CREATE using all forms of communication. The mission of Media Literacy Week is to highlight the power of media literacy education and its essential role in education today.”

Why teach media literacy?
As access to media has evolved, our students are inundated with information/misinformation 24-7 – and need a skill set for determining credibility.

From deconstructing websites to teaching Google search skills, we need to be having conversations with our children/students about the importance of media literacy and knowing the reliability of sources. It’s very easy to fall into the trap of “believing and sharing everything you read” because in most cases, the articles, websites, stories and images appear to be credible at first glance. Fact-checking is so important and often a missed step when rushing to complete an assignment. There are many resources available online to help students fact check. Get started by exploring some of our resources below.

Media Literacy Resources

NAMLE Parent Giude Cover

Parent’s Guide
Building Healthy Relationships with Media: A Parent’s Guide to Media Literacy
NAMLE and Trend Micro created a parent’s guide to assist families in starting media literacy conversations at home. They focus on teaching children to ask questions. With real-life examples of conversations that may come up at home, the guide provides parents with some simple ways to encourage critical thinking. The guide is available in English and Spanish. 

Conversation Starters for Parents
What is media literacy and why is it important?  (Common Sense Media)
Explore questions by age – from preschool age children to teens 13+

How can kids figure out what’s credible news and what’s fake news?
(Common Sense Media)
The quantity and types of news sources in the digital age have made it more challenging to determine what’s real and what’s fake.

Curriculum for Teachers/Students
Be Internet Awesome: Don’t Fall For Fake (Google)

Turning Your Students into Web Detectives (Edutopia)
Eduptopia shares “Five vetted resources students can use to separate truth from fiction” in their article By Jeff Knutson

5 Essential Media Literacy Questions for Kids – Video (Common Sense Media)
Use these five essential questions as a springboard, and help kids dig deeper with even more critical questions of their own.

Beyond Fake News: Media Literacy Toolkit for Educators (Common Sense Media)
From lesson plans about fact-checking to clickbait headlines and fake news, they’ve covered everything.

Student Challenge/Contest

Media Literacy Student Challenge | Explore Your Relationship With News (New York Times – by Katherin Schulten)*
* If any of your students craft an essay or create a video for the above Media Literacy Student Challenge, please contact us through commenting below. We would love to showcase their work. 

Follow the Conversation on Twitter

The Media Literacy Week emoji is live on Twitter. When you tweet, just type in all or any of the following hashtags (#MediaLitWk #mlw17 #GetSmartOnline) and the emoji will automatically show up in your tweet.

Media Literacy Week Emoji

Media Literacy is a skill all students must have. When we started teaching Digital Citizenship over 10 years ago, our media literacy focus was on teaching students how to identify “hoax” websites. As Google became the world’s leading search engine, we added searching tips to our workshops and growing resources. Today we recognize the need to address news and its distribution through social media. For more resources, tips and strategies, we will be offering  a 1-hour workshop (Truth,Truthiness & Fake News – Media Literacy in a “Post Truth” Era) to EGUSD teachers/staff at the January 27, 2018,  Digital Kids, Digital Classroom Saturday Seminar. We hope you can join us.



Teaching About Intellectual Property – #Hyperdoc Style

Can I use that? Hyperdoc

We love the many ways teachers in the district are guiding student-centered conversations about building positive digital footprints, protecting online privacy, and confronting cyberbullying. A shout out to Common Sense Media, iKeepSafe, and Netsmartz for the wealth of free resources and lessons you provide to schools on these key digital citizenship topics.

EGUSD’s 4 digital citizenship themes – BY NC SA

There is a fourth digital citizenship topic that many teachers are increasingly recognizing the need to address: intellectual property. By 5th grade, most students have been warned about the consequences of plagiarism, a conversation that is typically repeated throughout their middle and high school days. While plagiarism is certainly an important topic, in a digital age, copyright,  fair use, and Creative Commons also need to be included in the conversations. Given how easy it has become to download, copy, remix, and upload online content, students need to have an understanding of both their intellectual property rights and responsibilities.

Digital ID Project’s 4 digital citizenship foci – BY NC SA

Digital ID Project’s 4 digital citizenship foci – BY NC SA

As a co-directors of the district’s Digital Citizenship initiative and co-curators of the Digital ID project, we are always seeking teacher-friendly/student-friendly resources on intellectual property. We also facilitate district-wide and national workshops ( e.g., CUE and ISTE) to help teachers understand that copyright is different from plagiarism and that fair use and Creative Commons are also options for our students.

Based on questions from workshop participants, two years ago we created Can I Use That? A Guide for Teaching about Creative Commons. We always review the guide prior to a workshop to check if we need to update any information or add new resources. This year, in preparation for the March CUE Conference, we’re adding a #HyperDocs* lesson that invites students to delve into copyright, flex their fair use muscles, and license their own creations via Creative Commons. So here it is: Can I Use That? Exploring Copyright, Fair Use, and Creative Commons.

If you have questions about the lesson or suggestions for updates to the Guide, please respond with a comment below.

*#HperDocs is a term invented by @LHighfill. Lisa Highfill was our featured keynote speaker for our EGUSD January 28 Digital Kids, Digital Classrooms Saturday Seminar.

Elementary Digital Citizenship Pilot Program

Common Sense Media announced in August that they had teamed with Nearpod to offer a more interactive version of their digital citizenship curriculum. In partnering with Nearpod, they are able to offer a whole new level of engagement and features for teachers and students. Through open-ended response questions, instantly graded quizzes, interactive polls, homework assignments, videos and the ability to add customized presentations, teachers can interact and respond instantly to teachable moments on all issues of digital citizenship. Teachers can also see the results of their students in real-time and can run post-lesson reports.

Several EGUSD computer resource teachers showed an interest in wanting to explore Nearpod as a way to deliver the already-in-use Common Sense Media lessons,  so we reached out to Nearpod to set up a hands-on training/tour of the lessons.

Nearpod Google Hangout

A small group of computer resource teachers/digital citizenship coordinators volunteered to attend a Google hangout session with Nearpod to tour the app’s features. We will be piloting (at no cost) the fee-based Common Sense Media/Nearpod digital citizenship curriculum at five of our elementary schools over the next several months:

  • Edna Batey Elementary School
  • Helen Carr Castello Elementary
  • Elk Grove Elementary
  • Elliott Ranch Elementary
  • Pleasant Grove Elementary

Click here to view a sample Common Sense Media/Nearpod lesson – Grades 3-5 – Super Digital Citizen

At the close of the program, we will post feedback from our pilot teachers.

EGUSD Teachers Take Student Writing Beyond the Walls of the Classroom

Teachers from kindergarten through high school headed to Technology Services Monday afternoon to learn more about QuadBlogging and the Student Blogging Challenge, two exciting opportunities to build on students’ writing skills as well as their digital/global citizenship skills (protecting online privacy, crediting sources, online ettiquette and digital footprint).

QuadBlogging, created by United Kingdom educator David Mitchell,  is a powerful, yet simple way to connect students to an authentic audience. The way QuadBlogging works is a group (a “quad”) of four teachers agree to have their students comment on each other’s blogs in an organized fashion. Quads can be comprised of classrooms across the state, nation or world. Each week, one of the four gets a turn to be the spotlight class. The other three classes visit and leave comments. Over the course of a month, every student’s work is viewed and commented on. Along the way, students learn about respectful, effective online communication, an essential skill in the age of Common Core Standards.

Similar to QuadBlogging, the Student Blogging Challenge is a free and open international collaborative project that runs for 10 weeks, twice each year (September – December and March – June) and challenges students to complete 10 activities. The Challenge is open to both class blogs and to individual student bloggers from all over the world and of all ages. Although supported by Edublogs, classroom or student blogs don’t need to be hosted by Edublogs to participate.

The main difference between the Student Blogging Challenge and QuadBlogging is the flexible schedule of the Challenge. Participating bloggers may complete as many of the tasks as they wish and in any order. The Challenge is a wonderful way for students – and teachers – to increase their technology skills as well as to connect to an authentic audience.

Workshop participants enthusiastically discussed the benefits of both programs. “Fifteen minutes into the workshop, I had already registered my classroom blog on the QuadBlogging site,” said an elementary teacher worskshop participant. “I’m looking forward to sharing these two exciting cross-curricular options with teachers at my site,” said a secondary librarian.

If you were not able to attend the Monday afternoon session on QuadBlogging and the Student Blogging Challenge, you still have time to register for both global events by visiting the QuadBlogging and Student Blogging Challenge websites. But hurry… September is just around the corner.

Interested in learning more about blogs and blogging?  Our Professional Development workshops are listed under the Educators drop-down navigation menu on this digital citizenship website. Workshops are available to EGUSD employees only.

2013-2014 EGUSD Digital Citizenship Training

Site representatives from across the district packed the Robert L. Trigg Education Center Board Room for the August 5, 2013, EGUSD Digital Citizenship Curriculum training. The two-hour session provided the opportunity for teachers and administrators from both elementary and secondary sites to share current best practices in implementing digital citizenship curriculum and to brainstorm ideas, directions, and needs for the new school year.

The workshop included the launching of the district’s Digital Citizenship website, a presentation by Common Sense Media’s Kelly Mendoza, and a regional breakout session.  Throughout the workshop, the discussions focused on the multiple ways to meet the 2012 CIPA E-Rate requirements (cyberbullying awareness and response, digital footprint, intellectual property, protecting online privacy ) – while addressing Common Core State Standards.

Through Technology Services, the district has been offering digital citizenship workshops for a number of years. This year’s event, however, was the first time  to bring elementary and secondary sites together. “Based on participant feedback, we will definitely be offering more cross grade level sessions,” said Technology Services Director Steve Mate.

In summing up the event, Toby Johnson Middle School teacher Laura Zhu shared, “I enjoyed the chance to look at digital citizenship as a continuum. Having an understanding of our elementary feeder sites’ programs, as well as Franklin High School’s, where my students are headed, made me aware of how important our role is in helping students build a positive online presence.”

If you are an EGUSD teacher or administrator and you are interested in joining a district-wide conversation on digital citizenship, we will soon be posting a registration link for our upcoming September 19 Digital Citizenship Across the Curriculum and Throughout the School Day workshop.

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