Welcome to this very important re-post dedicated to promoting educational social media. I have had many requests in the last month to republish this article. I know these ideas on digital citizenship involving proper online communication will help you facilitate rich and meaningful academic discussions using the internet. First, to ensure you do not miss one of these valuable posts or other resources covering PBL, Digital Curriculum, Web 2.0, STEM, 21st century learning, and technology integration please sign up for 21centuryedtech by email or RSS. As always, I invite you to follow me on twitter (@mjgormans). Please give this post a retweet and pass it on. Have a great week – Michael Gorman (21centuryedtech)
Booking Info – Are you looking for a practical and affordable professional development workshop for your school or conference? I have traveled the country delivering PD relating to technology integration, PBL, STEM, Digital Literacy, and the 4 C’s. I have done 100′s of workshops and presentations. Check out my Booking Page… Dates are going fast, with time up to and including December just about filled, but i am taking 2014 dates.
Promote Digital Citizenship… 10 Ideas For Rich Academic Student Discussion On the Internet
By Michael Gorman at (http://21centuryedtech.wordpress.com)
You are perhaps aware that more and more classrooms are opening their doors to student discussion online. This happens in the virtual online classroom, but also in the blended classroom. As you might know, the blended classroom is one where students and teacher meet in a traditional school but use the internet to open the classroom walls to the community, region, country, and world. There are many services that provide student discussion forums that can facilitate student online interaction. Some well known ones include, Edmodo, My Big Campus, and Moodle.
When first joining the world of student online discussions it can be often noted that the student conversation is not always highly academic and sometimes lacks rigorous thought. After all, students have already learned to digitally communicate using social media and they transfer this past practice to the academic classroom. It is important that teachers facilitate proper online communication while promoting digital citizenship. Through proper guidance and digital education any classroom can discover the rich and meaningful opportunities that an online discussion can provide. Please feel free to use these ten ideas below and share with others.
1. Keep discussions to Bloom’s higher level topics including creating, evaluating, and synthesizing.
2. Use discussion as a formative assessment for checking both individual and group understanding. This does not mean it always has to be graded for accuracy… but more as a way for the teacher to plan. Many times in this method, the question maybe lower on Blooms Scale to show remembering and understanding.
3. A discussion can be graded, although it maybe best to grade for participation. In this manner the teacher may post and then ask students to reply to teacher post with a requirement of so many sentences. There could also be a requirement to comment to stated number of other student posts. When grading be specific on requirements.
4. A class discussion is not a emulation of social media, it is an academic forum. This should be stated in the discussion question until it becomes acceptable classroom practice. and culture. Some things to keep in mind are the following.
- Proper English grammar
- Complete sentences
- No use of text lingo (example; LOL”
- Any copy and pasted resources or reference should be at least cited by name and link
- Topic should be adhered to, no outside or side bar conversation
- Proper spelling of words
- Thoughts and ideas should be concise and to the point (do not ramble)
- When stating positives and agreements be specific as to reasoning… keep away from Yearbook type comments
- Exercise proper Digital Citizenship (see below)
5. Students should practice proper digital citizenship
- Empathy for others should be practiced with an understanding of an individual’s writing before commenting
- No use of text lingo (example; LOL)
- Proper peer critique should be emphasized with an emphasis on caring (example… do not be critical, instead use I wonder statements)
- All comments should be academic (See above)
- Do not use personal identifying information
- No plagiarizing… give credit
- There should be no bullying or put downs
6. Mix up media in discussions… do not always have them text based. Use documents, PDF files, movies, music, sound files, Power Points, website links, and images to promote the standards and concepts.
7. Keep on topic… try to provide discussions that will support the standards and 21st skills that you wish to emphasize and that will be assessed.
8. Use a rubric if providing a discussion for understanding. Make sure your students are aware and use the rubric when making any comments or replies. Possibly include the 21st century skills of Communication, Critical Thinking, Collaboration, and Creativity. Do not try to include all, and break these skills down to individual components. Example… instead of Creativity use one component such as divergent thinking.
9. As a teacher be sure to model by practicing what is required, while also commenting on what students write.
10. Encourage students to create their own discussions so they begin to own the process.
Read the full article at Tech and Learning Magazine August Issue Page 42. Thanks for joining me on this wonderful journey of 21st century PBL resources . Join me in future weeks as together we continue to explore several more posts devoted to the Flipped Classrooms, Project Based Learning, Assessing 21st century skills, technology integration, web resources, and digital literacy. I enjoy learning from all of you. Also remember to subscribe to this blog by RSS or email and follow me on twitter at mjgormans. I also appreciate your sharing of this post and any retweets. Keep up the amazing work, have a great week, and enjoy the resources! – Mike Gorman
Booking Info - Are you looking for a practical and affordable professional development workshop for your school or conference? I have traveled the country delivering PD relating to technology integration, PBL, STEM, Digital Literacy, and the 4 C’s. I have done 100′s of workshops and presentations. Check out my Booking Page… Dates are going fast, with time up to and including December just about filled, but i am taking 2014 dates.