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. Having worked with students from K – 12 for years I have a real respect for the necessity of an articulated integration curriculum from a whole school standpoint. My now current position at Doshisha University’s International School, Kyoto in which I’m the Network Administrator / ICT Specialist. More info on me at my Hub. Activity Summary
By considering the responsibilities we share online and in the creation, remixing and sharing of our work and in all aspects of our use of online media we can lay the foundations and understandings for our students and communities for greater safety and more advanced learning outcomes. I will offer a discussion of these concepts, with real world examples and references to the work of others before sharing an example of how social learning and integration has been managed in one of my classrooms through the execution of project based learning before finally offering a free, online Acceptable Usage Agreement Teacher Assistant for you to use or adapt for your own use. This will highlight the issues relevant to embarking on a platform for any school interested in embarking on an integration program geared towards engendering 21st century skills and responsible digital citizenship. Class or subject area: ICT Integration, Social Learning, Digital Citizenship, Project Based Learning Grade level(s): 1-12 Specific learning objectives: International Society for Technology in Education’s National Education Technology Standards: • Digital Citizenship • Students understand human, cultural, and societal issues related to technology and practice legal and ethical behavior. • Advocate and practice safe, legal, and responsible use of information and technology • Exhibit a positive attitude toward using technology that supports collaboration, learning, and productivity • Demonstrate personal responsibility for lifelong learning • Exhibit leadership for digital citizenship
Anniversary Book Project
By: Sean Thompson Author contact:
Social Learning Theory, Digital Citizenship & ICT Integration Married Through Project Based Learning
Creative Commons License: CC BY-NC-ND
Social learning theory informs much of the thinking behind ICT integration across the curriculum. By considering the responsibilities we share online and in the creation, remixing and sharing of our work and in all aspects of our use of online, digital media we can, from the outset, lay the foundations and understandings for our students and communities for greater safety and more advanced learning outcomes. I will offer a discussion of these concepts, with real world examples and references to the work of others before sharing an example of how social learning and integration has been managed in one of my classrooms through the execution of project based learning before finally offering a free, online Acceptable Usage Agreement Teacher Assistant created with a colleague for you to use or adapt for your own use. This will highlight many of the issues relevant to embarking on a sound platform for any school interested in earnestly embarking on an integration program geared towards engendering 21st century skills and responsible digital citizenship within their schools. New media pervades more of our lives everyday. As we live in an ever-more technological world, it falls to us all to help map the terrain for our students, regardless of subject area. Social Learning Theory Social learning theory emphasizes the importance of observing and modeling the behaviors, attitudes, and emotional reactions of others. Like becomes like. Values become shared. At the risk of sounding overly pedantic, human culture is founded on these principles. Reciprocal causation states that behavior can influence both the environment and the person. By demonstrating how the actions we take online have the potential to impact on ourselves and others, and how we have a responsibility to use the creations of others in a respectful manner by referencing and respecting their work, our use of new media enters an obviously social context. Self-regulation is when the individual has his or her own ideas about what is appropriate behavior and chooses actions accordingly. There are several aspects of self-regulation, all of which are bound by social and ethical considerations. Remixing, or using the work of others respectfully, citing where appropriate, is a long-standing human tradition. You likely have heard Isaac Newton’s famous quote: If I have seen further it is by standing on ye shoulders of giants. Newton didn’t write this! Not originally anyway. The 12th century theologian and author John of Salisbury initially coined a version of the phrase. I would encourage educators the world over to view Kirby Ferguson’s film series, Everything is a Remix (http://www.everythingisaremix.info/). It gives detailed insight into how human creativity works. Never has it been easier for humans to share, appropriate, recombine, remix, reimagine and produce derivative and even brand new work based largely on the work of others and share it with a potentially global audience, all from their homes. Digital media has changed the world in countless other ways as well. It impacts on: • • • privacy (leading to safety in some respects) the evolution of bullying (cyber-bullying) the greater need for understanding the changing world of copyright and digital “ownership”
All of these demand an understanding of individual responsibility online. Digital Responsibility: Where does it lie?
What is a good man but a bad man’s teacher? What is a bad man but a good man’s job? ~ Tao Te Ching The relevance of this Taoist profundity for me in relation to questions about who should teach what when about responsible citizenship online is the underlying principle that the one in the position to do what is right has the obligation to take the opportunity when it is there. More simply put, all caregivers share the responsibility for imparting good online habits including protecting oneself and respecting others; whenever and wherever the opportunity arises. As professionals trained in education and, hopefully, with a well-developed sense and understanding of “netiquette,” copyright, fair usage and the following of acceptable social norms and how to engender their understanding, clearly a large portion of this responsibility falls to us. I will make commentary on some online blog posts here while adding my own viewpoints in order to share my thoughts and tie the piece together as a whole. “Bullying” Has Little Resonance with Teenagers http://dmlcentral.net/blog/danah-boyd/bullying-has-little-resonance-teenagers This piece starts off stating that bullying hasn’t really changed. Adding the prefix “cyber” to it is, to me, only a reference to the new tools available. Not unlike learning to scribble an unflattering image of a friend in preschool, the technology is an indication of technical sophistication, not a prompt for anti-social behaviour in itself. As my mother so regularly says, “Don’t throw the baby out with the bath water.” Perhaps more succinctly put by this author however: If we want to combat bullying, we need to start by understanding the underlying dynamics. Youth today do not have wildly different values or social norms to previous generations. They do, however, have some evolved linguistic nuances and, as all new generations, some different shared understandings. I found it quite instructive to read that young interviewees were quoted as saying that “...bullying was when someone picked on someone or physically hurt someone who didn’t deserve it [my emphasis].” So there do appear to be rules here already. Our role then, is to understand them and discuss with our students, in language that is meaningful to the students themselves, not just their parents, teachers and educational administrators. Again I defer to the author: A lecture on bullying is going to be completely ignored… either as irrelevant or meaningless to them personally. They don’t see what they’re doing as bullying. We had best keep in mind also that, “...in all cases, the point is to show who has social power. It’s all about creating and reinforcing hierarchies.” As stated earlier, the concept remains the same. Teens are merely doing what humans do best; learning in a social context. They are learning from what they see mentors (adults) do around them. The attention seeking aspect of some bullying further reinforces the fact that “cyber-bullying” is just a new outlet for an old rite of passage made more public and further accentuated by mainstream media. I doubt many would argue for a prohibition on literacy if a teacher found a nasty note being passed in class. Our Space: Being a Responsible Digital Citizen http://www.goodworkproject.org/practice/our-space/ This resource offered an invaluable source of easily-digestible definitions that would add to any educator’s repertoire of referral documents. It outlines fair use as a legal principle that allows limited
use of copyrighted materials without permission from the copyright holder and further lists how creators and users of content have responsibilities to their audiences. There are a variety of detailed lesson ideas that were geared towards skills such as: • Understanding the intent of copyright (to promote the creation of new works by giving copyright owners the ability to control them and to profit from them for a limited time). • Describing the purpose of fair use (attempts to balance the rights of copyright owners and creators of new content and to safeguard against private censorship by copyright holders). • Identifying key factors to consider when deciding whether a given appropriation is fair use Furthermore, there is a list of understandings that: • The use of copyrighted material must be transformative. • The amount of copyrighted material used must be proportional to the purpose of the creation. This means that the new creator should use only a portion of the original creation that seems reasonable in the scope of their work as a whole. Did they use only the parts that are most relevant to the message they are trying to get across? • Users must always strive to give credit to sources. • The appropriator must consider whether the new work might potentially cut off financial rewards for the original creator How to Educate: “Real World” in Class Naturally, regarding digital media or not, it is useful to work from the concrete to the abstract. Younger learners can be introduced to simple copyright concepts as simply as a teacher pasting their name obviously over a famous author’s on a book and claiming that they are the author of the story time book as a colleague of mine recently did. Students as young as pre-school can be encouraged to “copyright” their own work by placing copyright marks on their own, originally produced pieces, providing them with an early start at understanding this changing idea. Older students can be given assignments to make collage of Google images and then, only later, be asked to reference their creators. This makes clear the need to be diligent in referencing sources as we work. Of course, as teachers, we have a responsibility to model respect for copyright and fair usage principles ourselves. Project Based Learning Brings it All Together Checking for Prior Knowledge At my present school students take turns running assemblies and presenting to the school. The theme our class drew for their final assembly was, Representing Ourselves. My students did so digitally, producing Power Point animated presentations which were screencasted and narrated to be later fused by me before sharing our work at school and online so I was well informed as to their level of skill going into our final term’s project based learning unit of study. The Rubric & Introduction At the start of term I introduced Project Based Learning to my Grade Six class. I explained that we would be combining English Literacy, Japanese, ICT Integrated Studies and Social Studies learning outcomes to create documentaries to share with the school. I explained that we would be extending our skills with “digital story telling” while taking our previous term’s Social Studies lessons further by producing primary source material based on excursions, photography, video recording and interviewing a variety of people through a variety of means as well as using material sourced through
the library and the internet following copyright and fair use guidelines. I then introduced the rubric I had devised, explaining that this was what the excellence we sought looked like. I also told them they would be responsible for how well they did and that they were free to make commentary on the rubric and, potentially, make changes based on their arguments. Assessment as Learning We managed to make a science crossover here as well. We watched a series of six short YouTube and other educational videos on the flow and sources of rivers. We assessed them for effectiveness of communicating information based on a very simple rubric and later used the actual material gleaned from the videos as the start to our lesson on the causes for river flow directions, sources of water for rivers and the planning and execution of experiments related to this study. The Skill-building Formative Assessment Students were given free reign to extend their skill levels using Camtasia Studio 7 to produce effective presentations on a subject of their own choosing. Having seen how I used transitions, title and end scene animations and background music to fuse all of their previous independent assembly productions, students were now charged with using them independently, as well as other elements of the grammar of cinema to produce more effective pieces of visual communication for themselves. As some became more confident users of the software they took on the roles of mentors for their classmates. Assessment as Learning II As homework one week all students were required to assess two other students’ independent presentations made on a topic of their own choosing. This was meant to get students thinking critically at the time when they were making their own final cuts and further inspire conversation. Students were encouraged to defend their work and/or seek more feedback from their peers to improve their productions. The End Result I am quite pleased with all of the final project team documentaries as a whole. As to be expected with a collaborative presentation produced by a variety of groups there are obvious levels of difference in the demonstration of skills and knowledge gained throughout this foray into project based learning. I must also mention that the students did a fantastic job and never gave up despite the regular technical difficulties we experienced. Persistence, surely was a skill engendered throughout this unit. Also coming as no surprise was the fact that one, clearly motivated and usually talented student was in the case of many groups, the one nominated to tie it all together and make the final work look sharp. No problem. As the development of individual skills necessary for producing an effective piece of visual communication was just as important as the time management, collaboration and research skills focused upon all students were required to produce a shortened version of their group’s documentary. As we were planning to unveil our work at the graduation ceremony, it was presented as a chance to create shorter versions for possible inclusion as an abbreviated preview. This way all students could put both their own versions and their complete group versions on their blogs. All students had to develop the collaboration, time-management, editing, research, presentation and social skills demanded in a 21st century classroom to succeed as productive team members. They
all had, furthermore, to use the concepts of fair use and citation demonstrating their understanding of these fundamental concepts before publishing their work on YouTube (limited to those with the links) as well. Conclusion: Online Acceptable Usage Policy http://useragreement.weebly.com/ I would encourage all educators tasked with creating acceptable usage agreements and/or policies, or even those looking for more insight into the issues at hand, to take a look at this site. It was produced with Brendan Lea, a colleague in my Master’s programme, as a free, online tool for this very reason. Having studied the need for such agreements in order to help educate students about their responsibilities to themselves (protection), to others (respect for copyright and fair use) and to the protection others (by not forwarding or engaging in abusive or socially callous behaviours with new media) we wanted to contribute. It was devised itself as a true remix. We both developed our own agreements first in isolation, Brendan focusing on teachers and myself on students. We then looked at other agreements to help refine our thoughts and fill in any holes. For my part, I owe a debt of gratitude to Mitch Norris, another colleague and Kim Cofino, an excellent course instructor for our Master’s programme, and her school, Yokohama International School, who opened up their own document to us. The site offers videos, links and other thoughts on our responsibilities as educators and some means by which we can work to ensure we assist our students with becoming responsible digital citizens who will in turn teach those they come into contact with. It can also be used as a source for constructing agreements and policies for your schools or classrooms. It is important to remember that the standards of practice remain even while the tools change.
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