Teacher Review for Digital Compass

An animated digital-citizenship choose-your-own-adventure

Sean A.
Technology coordinator
District 75 Central
New York, United States
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My Subjects Math, Science
My Rating
Learning Scores
My Students Liked It Yes
My Students Learned Yes
I Would Recommend It Yes
Setup Time Less than 5 minutes
Great for Individual
Small group
Great with Advanced learners
How I Use It
The animations were captivating for my elementary students, but I'm not sure if they would work for older students (the group the topics seemed geared to). I integrated it with the Common Sense Digital Citizenship Curriculum (available as iBooks or PDFs) for my K-5 classes. For K-2 we went through the scenarios as a class or in small groups, because the topics/situations could become complex. The 3-5 grade classes worked individually, but some situations required minor explanations. They were all very engaged, but I question how well it helps students retain the information. The first time through each scenario many students scored poorly on the mini-game. The different options in the story though encourage the students to repeat each situation, which is good, because repetition seems the main way to help them remember their correct choices/concepts. I have also paired it with the BrainPOP videos/lessons on internet safety.
My Take
The stories and animations are engaging for elementary students, but the topics seem geared towards older students. (I don't know many 5th graders considering having a positive digital footprint to land an internship). Once in the game there is little instruction on how to proceed. If you scroll down on the initial landing page there is a link to " see educator overview and materials". These are essential if you are presenting it in class (as opposed to a parent at home). I like that students are open to choose among many paths, but they are assessed through the mini-game at the end. One major fix that could held special needs and low-literacy students would be if the intro page for each character and the choices could be clicked so it would be read to the student.