Since embarking on ETL523 I have been able to consolidate a lot of my prior learning as well as expanding on this and developing a deeper understanding of concepts related to digital citizenship. A highlight of this subject for me has been the affirmation that what I was doing in the classroom with my students was well on track for developing confident, competent and responsible digital citizens. What lies ahead for me now is being able to take this deeper understanding and knowledge of digital citizenship as a classroom teacher and apply it more to my position as a leader within my school. Instead of thinking about one classroom and one group of students, I need to develop digital citizenship practices school wide. The completion of the Environmental Scan for assignment two has outlined a path ahead for my school and puts into perspective the importance implementing digital citizenship processes and practices across the curriculum.
In this post from March, I discussed the importance of concepts surrounding digital citizenship for educators. Some of the main points I highlighted were the need for teachers to fully understand and have a positive and professional digital footprint and the need for a holistic approach to digital citizenship across the school that includes input from all stakeholders. Given the completion of the Environmental Scan these initial ponderings have become incredibly important and have provided me with a positive start to sharing digital citizenship concepts with my colleagues. With these initial thoughts, combined with the Enlightened Digital Citizenship model, which I discussed in my report, I know that is where I need to start in providing support for teachers at my school in understanding concepts surrounding digital citizenship.
In reviewing the DLE at my school, I came to the conclusion that the teaching of digital citizenship is mostly done ad-hoc and left to the discretion of teachers…in the initial post I wrote, referred to above, I suggested that there were ‘growing and expanding’ process in place for incorporating digital citizenship. It is evident that from the completion of my report that there is still work to be done in this area. I still have the belief that teachers cannot effectively teach digital citizenship as a stand-alone concept but rather modeling expected behavioral practices by using digital technologies and online tools authentically in the classroom. I feel like this is my biggest hurdle at the moment, but with the recommendations of my report, I hope that I can slowly start to implement some changes.
As a new leader, in a new position, I have found this subject to be incredibly beneficial and so pertinent to teachers and students in today’s changing educational landscape. My next step is to create a school wide plan for our digital learning environment and without the completion of the environmental scan; I would probably still be grappling with where to start. The next goal for me is to create a committee or ‘team’ to gather some enthusiastic teachers at my school to help in motivating the masses, sharing and promoting the school vision and implementing changes that are needed. Fun times ahead!