approx read time : 1:30
I recently had the privilege of participating in a digital citizen panel of experts included students (!) alongside Simon Helton, Richard Culatta, Sandy Barnes and was chat moderated by Alysha English of the IDEO Teachers Guild. First, let me just say how excited I was to learn about the IDEO Teachers Guild. This amazing space brings teachers together to collaborate on designing creative solutions to common challenges. The challenge related to the chat I attended was “HMW empower students to be better digital citizens - smart, kind, and secure online?” You can see all the project submissions here. No winners or losers (woot!) but you can check out which activities got the most likes to become ‘favorites’.
The chat started out asking for a definition of ‘digital citizen’. In the old days (i.e. last year) the term digital citizen conjured up images of staving off cyber-bullying, copyright best practice and a list of ‘don’ts’ by which student (and teachers) could monitor ‘acceptable use’. Fast forward to today and we have students leading national political discourse and inventing products and systems that improve lives and societies.
Sound use of technology (aka Digital Citizenship) is no longer just about keyboarding and citations. Citizenship in the offline world is characterized by engagement in community; including those with a different point of view. Digital citizenship simply transfers that behavior to the place where most of our interactions (for better or worse) take place.
Many kids have learned to “THINK’ before they post but if we’re truly teaching digital citizenship why aren’t we asking them to THINK as they create? Is their work true, honest, inspiring, necessary and kind?* What does that look like? It’s the following list of technology ‘do's’
If we shift our thinking about Digital Citizenship from ‘don’ts’ to ‘dos’ we create a framework for instruction on appropriate engagement that’s relevant including; respectful dissent and thoughtful discourse, integrity in representing work as your own or another’s, setting standards by reporting inappropriate use, collaboration, analysis of data for bias, curating and creating engaging content that connects with an authentic audience.
I challenge you to THINK how you might model and encourage positive digital citizenship in your next lesson.
*Editor’s note: Some schools list the ‘i’ as illegal. Consider how this might reinforce the us vs. them attitude in teens. How can you build positive relationships when the establishment is assuming the kids are criminals?
approx read time: 2 min.
So much happened in the second half of 2017, I thought I'd catch up in this first post of 2018 and let you all know what I've been up to. It's been a busy fall as I settle into my new role as an an independent consultant. Getting a business up and running is something new for me and I'm happy to report that things are falling into place. So... what have I been up to you may ask? Well the real question is, what haven't I been up to?
First, training and presentations! I had the pleasure of working with John Sowash of Sowash Ventures to provide Google training for a few schools to start the year. I tagged along with him to Chandler Park Academy to get the middle school staff up to speed on Chromebooks. Then it was off to Rochester, NY for a day with the elementary staff at Manchester-Shortsville.
I also presented at Bay Arenac ISD's back to school PD on Google mapping tools (check out my maps in g-drive!), VR in the classroom, non-boring lectures and formative assessment tools. Mi Google was my next stop, with a session targeted to ELA teachers. Their favorites? symbaloo.edu, newsela, and read&write; all great resources for any content area. Finally keynoting the MANS second annual tech gathering with a great session on empathy and tech integration.
Second, Internet safety and digital citizenship. I've been working with the team at Protect Young Eyes visiting schools and churches from Grand Rapids, MI to Dallas, TX sharing an their incredible Internet safety message to kids k-12 and parents. It's been amazing! I'm also pleased to have been the lead curriculum designer for PYE's newest project, Virtue in Media, a faith-based k-8 digital citizenship curriculum.
Last but not least, Aquinas College, College of Ed Field Supervisor. I'm just starting my second semester as a student teacher field supervisor. It's such a privilege to work so closely with pre-service teachers. It's so valuable to see teaching through their eyes and to visit so many classrooms and schools throughout the Grand Rapids area. Not sure who's learning more, them or me! I've also been invited to present in their seminars on design thinking, tech integration, and Understanding by Design.
To top it all off, I've got a couple of proposals out for work this spring and next fall. I'm getting ready to present at the GVSU Math in Action Conference as well as MACUL and I've moved a few books from the 'to read' to the 'read that' list. The one that's made the biggest impression on me is Mathematical Mindsets. Look for a complete review in my next post.
So... here we go 2018 seatbelts fastened! It's going to be a wild ride... :)
(reading time 4 minutes) Author: Carol Glanville
I love the dictionary tool in Google. As an arm-chair linguist, I’m fascinated by the etymology of even simple words. Take the term distract. The archaic use is to perplex & bewilder. And today it still carries a negative connotation in actual meaning. ‘Bother, disturb, divert, side-track’ There’s definitely something subversive about a distraction. Current research shows that recovering from a distraction can take 20-30 minutes. That’s a lot of lost time. And especially soul-crushing when you (or your students) would way rather be enjoying the warm evenings and lake-worthy weekends that late May / early June bring our way.
So, allow me to share a post from last year at just about this time. With a few updates.
Finish Strong (May 13, 2016)
There’s always tomorrow…until there isn’t. It’s the end of the school year folks and that means crunch time; for students and teachers. Unfortunately, as the days get warmer and sunnier, it becomes that much harder to stay motivated and focused. And as the seniors dance out the door a month earlier than the rest…it’s even worse!
So this week I’m offering a couple of tried and true tech tips that to help you stay focused, on task, and true to your priorities. That means increased productivity, which doesn’t mean more time working, rather more work done in the same time (or less!)
*”A Life of Productivity – Practical ways to get more done.” 2014. 13 May. 2016 <http://alifeofproductivity.com/
Notifications: If you’re like me, your device(s) buzz, ding and blink incessantly! And although I may not feel compelled to read or respond to every notification that appears, the mere knowledge that it’s there or the glance away to read the lead text can cost up to 25 minutes of focused work.
So, whenever you’re working on a priority task, silence all notifications. There’s really no need to know about something until you can act on it anyway, and you can’t get to it any sooner if you’re losing 25 minutes every time you get tapped. Another benefit? You’ll feel more in control; no longer at the beck and call of every email, ‘like’, tweet and text.
*2017 update: Love it!! But it does take some re-training. It’s hard to resist tools that are so well-designed to disturb. I also felt guilty at first, which has weakened to mildly guilty at times over the last year. But what I’ve gained makes it worth the effort. I’m more respectful and attentive to those around me, I engage more purposefully in even the most mundane tasks. (I actually taste food when I eat without scrolling through FB or the latest news headlines!) Also? As soon as I recognize that I’m letting distraction set in, I recognize what’s really going on, that it’s time for a break. I bring myself to a stopping point and intentionally switch things up. So I no longer spend hours watching TV or on the computer, but really doing nothing.
Reminders: Disruptive notifications don’t just appear on your device. Many times they’re hiding in your own head, way down deep and silently work their way to the surface. Ever find yourself relaxing with a book, bingeing on netflix, or grading projects and suddenly you have no idea what happened to the last 10 minutes? Or a student name abruptly reminds you of a forgotten email? It’s nice to know your subconscious has got your back, but don’t let it derail you.
Start a list in your reminder app. As soon as you notice your mind wandering, make a note of what’s there. This allows you to let go of whatever it is without worrying it will be forgotten or buried and to focus on the original activity.
I have two lists. I check my work list every morning to prioritize my day. And I check my personal list before I head home so I can stop for milk and plan my evening.
*2017 Update: I like this one too, but have to admit this one didn’t stick as well. I”m really not much of a list maker so it wasn’t a natural inclination. However, whenever I feel like things are getting overwhelming, I head back to it.
Implement: These tips are equally valuable for students. At this age,their pre-frontal cortex (which controls impulsive activity) is somewhat under-developed. Invite them to a shared experience of testing these tips out. Take 5 minutes to explain each one, then check in each day to see if it’s working and what suggestions they have. They may not all try it at first, but the repetition and discussion will draw them in.
*2017 Update: I have shared these ideas with many people. It seems the biggest obstacle is, as usual, ourselves. It’s your time. However, it is a static, finite asset. Honor those around you (and yourself!) by making the most of every moment. Even your distractions can be planned to the point that you welcome them!
With the break in semesters, it’s as good a time as any to take a break from blogging and offer you a chance to review any posts you may have missed or wanted to review as you get a fresh start mid-year. So go ahead, check out the archives. Share your favorite post with a friend, or tweet it to your peeps. Refer to the tags at the end of each entry for search terms or just try your luck in archive roulette!
reading time: 2 minutes (+ if you choose to do a little follow-up)
Today’s post is a call to action. The ability to recognize integrity and honesty in the news and social media is a necessary life skill for us all as empowered citizens in a global community.
As educators, the concept of fake news comes as no big surprise. We’ve been dealing with teaching kids how to recognize legitimate online resources for years with fun hoax Websites that help us in a light-hearted way like the infamous zapatopi tree octopus site. But in recent months, what used to be a more or less minor bump on the path of research skill building has taken a serious turn.
The 2016 election cycle, the coining of the term post-truth (??) and international crises that have been borne out of fake news bring new urgency to the need to ensure that our students are discerning consumers of media. It’s like propaganda on steroids. One well-publicized tweet that espouses a personal opinion can suddenly become ‘fact’ as it’s supported by a strong fake news article, or even a misleading headline designed to grab attention on a legitimate news item. Since many don’t read past headlines, beliefs (aka ‘facts’) are being cemented in 140 characters (or less) with alarming regularity these days.
The Huffington Post recently published a fantastic article on what to look for in a news article to verify its veracity. There are 8 recommended ways to check a source. You don’t have to do them all, any one of them would expose a counterfeit. As you dive in, be sure to follow the links. They lead to many valuable resources, including access to a codified list of ‘news’ sites created by a journalism professor to help students discern between fake news, misleading headlines, and satire.
If you only have one ed tech resolution this year, make it: Empower your students to act with discretion and to be resourceful and knowledgeable.
Carol Glanville, M.Ed.
Organizational Design Consultant