To me digital citizenship is all about the safe and responsible use of the Internet. This should be in everyday use, as well as teaching others the importance of being a compliant Internet user. I believe that there are a number of different categories that are important to be a aware of when being a digital citizen.
-Safety: This includes knowing about the dangers that are on the net. These could be predators on chat rooms, or individuals performing identity theft. With this it is important to teach students not to give out personal information over the net, and the dangers of online chatrooms that aren’t related to educational sites. With this I would teach students about proper privacy settings, and how to protect their identity online by using unique usernames.
-Authenticity: This category would include plagiarism, accuracy, and credible sources. With students I would teach them the 5 Ws 1H about how to read a website to decipher if it is a reliable source. It will also be important to teach them how to be authentic ensuring that they are not using anyone else’s work unless it is properly cited.
-Cyberbullying: With all the different types of websites and social media sites and applications I think that it is very important to teach students about cyberbullying. Teaching them about what it is, as well as the different forms that it may include. I think it is also important to teach students what to do if they or someone else they know is a victim of cyberbullying. This may be talking to a parent or teacher, or accessing outside sources like Kids Help Phone (Great resource for teaching kids all about cyberbullying)
Below is a photo that encompasses my above beliefs on what to teach students that specifically relates to Facebook
Edutopia has a great site that dicusses ways to for teaching digital citizenship to students in an elementary classroom. The site includes links to lesson resources, online learning tools, and tools that incorporate social networks
How am I a Digital Citizen?
When I am using social media sites I have each of them at the highest privacy settings. On Facebook for example I do not add anyone that I do not know, and I have made it so that only individuals that have friends with common with me can even search for me on the site. I have to approve any photos before I am tagged in them, and only my friends can see any content that is published to my page. I have also decided to not include my last name on Facebook, just encase the above fails. On the other hand I have created Instagram and Twitter accounts used for teaching, that include my last name. I constantly search my name on google to look at my digital footprint and am fine with those accounts to show up if students were to search my name. With this I still keep the accounts private so that random individuals are not following me, but they are accounts that I can give to students that are educational, and model what proper Internet use should be.