Digital Citizenship Webinar with Kathy Cassidy

Posted: September 16, 2014 in EC&I 831 Social Media & Open Education, Ed Tech

Last night was my first official webinar! I had heard of Kathy Cassidy a couple of years ago when I was exploring twitter and looking for blogs to follow. She does amazing things with her primary students in the name of digital literacy. Check out her classroom blog! As I perused through her posts and the students’ blogs I was in awe of all of the technology she incorporates into her teaching. How do you get the kids from here to there? Where do you start? And what do you do if you don’t have a class set of iPads?

When I saw this post about her digital citizenship webinar on Powerful Learning Practice I had to check it out.

digital-citizenship webinar adKey ideas for me . . .

* Why use technology in the primary grades? They are growing up in a digital age. Digital literacy is important to their future! Parents want help teaching digital citizenship.

* The basics of digital citizenship – Be kind. Be safe. Once it’s out there, it’s out there forever. Look at other kid blogs and have students talk about what they’ve learned about that person just from reading their blog. What would people think of you based on your blog? Start thinking about leaving a positive digital footprint from the start.

* If parents are hesitant spend the time to familiarize and educate them about why you are using digital technology (…to encourage writing, to provide an audience for their writing and their discoveries, to document their progress, to connect with and learn from others, to build their digital literacy, etc.!) And explain what safeguards are in place (…don’t match pictures and names, password protected, be careful who you follow, no one posts unless the teacher has seen it first, etc.)

* Make student ownership of blogging easier by syncing a class edublog with EasyBlogJr. My understanding is that all student blogs are in a hub on the class edublog site and kids can upload their own content with the touch of a button. Wow! I’m looking forward to checking that out!

* Using Twitter: Be very selective in who you follow! Read tweets together. Use hashtags to group your tweets by content. And, try not to edit their language;) Let it be their authentic voice!

* Video Conferencing: Great for pre-readers/pre-writers. Use to talk with ‘experts’ (from qualified professionals to other students.) Read to each other via Skype or even try Reader’s Theatre!

* Using digital tools (though sometimes more work) can help teachers become more active with assessment because “you can hear their thinking not just see the product.”

AND FINALLY . . .

* When I asked Kathy ‘where did she start?’ She said she had a webpage but it seemed that the kids were just playing games. She wanted to get them blogging so it would involve higher order thinking!  Now THAT’S teaching!

If you want to learn more about how Kathy uses technology in her classroom check out her ebook Connected from the Start.Image 1

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