What is Digital Citizenship?

Twitter, Facebook, Snapchat, ask.fm are just a few of the social media sites that students are using today. Understanding these sites and keeping up-to-date on technology is difficult for most educators and parents.

Teaching young people how to effectively and safely use these sites can also be overwhelming for most parents. The new concept of digital citizenship is a tool to provide the assistance parents need.

“Digital Citizenship is a concept which helps teachers, technology leaders and parents to understand what students/children/technology users should know to use technology appropriately. Digital Citizenship is more than just a teaching tool; it is a way to prepare students/technology users for a society full of technology. Digital citizenship is the norms of appropriate, responsible technology use.  Too often we are seeing students as well as adults misusing and abusing technology but not sure what to do. The issue is more than what the users do not know but what is considered appropriate technology usage.”

Educators and parents can be examples of positive digital citizenship through their own appropriate use of technology.

As listed on eSchoolNews by Laura Devaney, Managing Editor, here are 10 additional digital citizenship resources:
1. Common Sense Media offers a free K-12 digital citizenship curriculum designed to help students think about their behaviors and actions online.
2. Teachers can access YouTube’s digital citizenship resources to help educate students, ages 13-17, about responsible online behavior, protecting their identity, and more.
3. BrainPOP’s digital citizenship spotlight touches on issues including online safety, cyberbullying, plagiarism, information privacy, and more.
4. BrainPOP Jr. also offers a digital citizenship spotlight geared toward younger students.
5. This guide to “Staying Sane in Cyberspace” includes 45 digital citizenship resources compiled by TechChef4u.
6. A guide to online manners, arranged in an infographic, can help students learn more about how their online actions impact them now and in the future.
7. This resource provides valuable information on Creative Commons, online attribution, and usage rules.
8. While this is a paper resource, this poster about Facebook bullying could serve as a helpful and useful guide for students.
9. Embrace Civility in the Digital Age, formerly the Center for Safe and Responsible Internet Use, offers a number of resources and tools to teach students how to be cyber-savvy.
10. NetSmartzKids, a program of the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children, offers digital citizenship and online safety resources.



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