This project has tested my collaboration skills. The purpose of this project was to build collaboratively. I think that in a normal COETAIL Course starting in September and having Course 2 ending near Christmas, that would be good timing. But with this course, it puts ending Course 2 very close to the beginning of school for some teachers. I think that has caught a lot of us out as several people were caught out.
But I digress! So we have been tasked to work collaboratively to build a professional development program based on the Digital Citizenship (DC) themes of Course 2. When I joined Dudley and Michael they already had the basic idea for a three-day plan. So I jumped in with helping clarify ways that we could do this by thinking of it not as three days but as three courses. That way they could be delivered in a variety of ways not just on PD or pre-planning days. After some initial freaking out about how much time we had and getting a small extension we began to claim our “day”. I chose to work on DC through the G Suite.
We chose to create a website so that we would have, as a team, even more, ability to share the courses with teachers. The website could be used during a PD day or a pre-planning session or it could be shared with teachers so that they can use it independently. The advantage of a website is that it is easy to update, easy to find (if you bookmark it!) and allows for multiple inputs. This means that it will not be a one-time click on a slideshow read it and then never review it again, resource. It can become a live resource within a school to be used to continue the conversation around Digital Citizenship, Privacy, and Digital Literacy.
The propose of my page of the website is to give teachers the talking points and information that they need to make sure that they are bringing up the ideas of DC whenever they are using technology. I feel that this is a much better way to deliver DC than having stand-alone DC lessons with no connection to what you are actually using in class at that point in time.
So I created a slideshow to highlight the key points around DC in some of the G Suite apps. In theory, the slideshow could be one that is given to teachers to read by themselves but I have found that a) They don’t read them and b) that method does not give them the opportunity to ask questions about real live instances that have happened in their classrooms. Also by presenting these to a whole group, you are more likely to have everyone get the same interpretation (though not always!).
I chose the DC through G Suite because I have found that many times teachers miss prime opportunities to embed DC while using the apps in their classrooms. With just a simple reminder to the students about expectations each time they open an app they are less likely to have issues. I can remember back to a visit in 2010 to NIST in Bangkok. I ask the students about email and without fail every time I asked them about their email they said “We use email for school purposes only” then they answered my question. It was obvious that they had heard that over and over again and they knew the purpose of email in at setting.