What is digital citizenship, anyways?
Digital citizenship (DC) is a way of thinking, being, and acting online. It means that students and staff have the knowledge to think critically and know when they can’t trust something online. DC is being safe and not sharing personal information online. Lastly, DC is achieved by acting responsibly through communication and behavior online. Who we hope to be as a contributing member of society, should also be how we handle ourselves in the digital world.
SPS is dedicated to helping our students, staff and parents achieve this goal together. One of the ways SPS approaches teaching digital citizenship is to utilize a framework that is dedicated to promoting digital citizenship. SPS uses Common Sense Media, which is a website with the goal of teaching positive cyber skills. From their website:
Common Sense Education supports K–12 schools with everything educators need to empower the next generation of digital citizens. Our innovative, award-winning Digital Citizenship Curriculum prepares students with lifelong habits and skills, supports teachers with training and recognition, and engages families and communities with helpful tips and tools. Schools everywhere rely on our free curriculum, expert advice, and edtech ratings to help kids thrive. Our vision: Students thriving as learners, leaders, and citizens in the digital age.
In addition to utilizing the resources and curriculum from Common Sense Media, SPS takes digital citizenship to the next level with a curated curriculum that is tailored to specific DC issues our district faces. Many stakeholders were involved in the creation of this curriculum which includes instructional technologists, librarians, classroom teachers, and district leaders. Like Common Sense Media, our curriculum considered what was developmentally appropriate for each grade level and was designed accordingly. Lessons are curated to be for a whole class or a quick lesson as needed throughout the year. The creation of DC newsletters and conversation starters allows parents/guardians to feel connected to their students learning and be able to talk to them about digital citizenship.