Supporting Tomorrow’s Digital Citizens: It's Digital Citizenship Week!

October 21, 2013
Kelsey Herron
Common Sense Media
San Francisco, United States
CATEGORIES Common Sense Resources, Digital Citizenship

Every day, students are challenged with online ethical dilemmas. Each post, search, chat, text message, and profile update has the potential to cause a chain reaction, whether it be positve or negative.

To make it easier for teachers and schools just getting started with their approach to teaching digital citizenship, we’ve developed a new starter toolkit. It also support schools wanting to participate this year's Digital Citizenship Week, which is October 21-25.

The purpose of Digital Citizenship is to build awareness of the importance of teaching digital citizenship and to help teachers and schools activate their communities in meaningful ways around these topics. We are proud to lead this initiative in partnership with Cable In the Classroom and in the context of Connected Educator Month.

The toolkit, which addresses students, teachers, and families, also includes grade-specific lesson plans and printable material for the classroom.  For example, one poster presents a flow chart that poses the question, “I took a photo of my friend that I want to share…now what?” and encourages students to lead themselves to the right answer. See all of the resources associated with the Digital Citizenship Week Toolkit.

In addition to toolkit, here is a list of five other ways to get started teaching digital citizenship using our toolkit’s resources:

  1. Hang up one of our grade-specific posters that detail what it means to be a responsible digital citizen.
  2. For younger students, teach the “rings of responsibility,” or the various responsibilities students have to themselves, their friends, and family, as well as their communities, when they agree to be a digital citizen.
  3. Engage older elementary students with our Digital Passport, an interactive, Web-based curriculum that teaches -- and tests -- the basics of digital literacy and citizenship.
  1. Encourage students to be creative digital citizens, and share their stories. Check out our resources on digital storytelling, and maybe even host an event to showcase student work or post it on your school’s online platforms.
  2. Ensure that kids take their classroom lessons home by distributing a family tip sheet or media agreement to define what digital citizenship means outside of the classroom.

We hope you take advantage of these free, easy resources during the week, and register with our site to dig in deeper. You can always follow us on Twitter (@CommonSenseEd), and use #DigCitWk to stay updated on this week’s events and news.