Tuesday, June 29, 2010

Cyberbullying and Digital Citizenship

The World Wide Web... When people hear that term do they think of the global impact their postings can have? Or, do they just think about easier access to information of all sorts?  Whatever you or I think, our students may not understand the implications of all their postings on the web. The New York Times article linked below discusses the prevalence of cyberbullying and the inability of schools to address the issue of off-site postings. Even the courts are confused about where responsibility lies. The only thing that is clear is that we need to educate our students about ethical and responsible digital citizenship. We need to start from an early age, and continue to teach throughout a student's years in school. Bullying has more impact now that it can remain in a permanent and publicly accessible format.  We need to help our students understand not only the impact of their words, texts, and video, but also the permanence that web postings maintain.

Here's a link to The New York Times article about cyberbullying:
The New York Times - Cyberbullying

Here's a link to Common Sense Media, a nonprofit organization working to develop responsible digital citizenship.  They also have some cool lesson plans and parent/student contracts.
Common Sense Media

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