Digital Citizenship in Schools: Nine Elements all Students Should Know

Teachers are continuing to have a difficult time adjusting to the world that their students are growing up in.  In some classrooms, there is still a disconnect between teachers and students.  Discussions about the digital world are avoided for many reasons.  Teachers may have a hard time understanding what digital citizenship really means and feel ill-prepared to lead discussions.   Educators may have a lack of resources from which to create lessons.  Many teachers feel as if they don't have time for it, treating it as a different subject rather than integrated into all subjects.

I just purchased Digital Citizenships in Schools, by Mike Ribble to help support teachers as they think about digital citizenship in their classroom.  Ribble defines digital citizenship as "norms of appropriate, responsible behavior with regard to technology use."

In the book, he provides educators 9 Elements of Digital Citizenship that allow teachers to understand the complex layers of digital citizenship.

  1. Digital Access- can all users participate if they want?
  2. Digital Commerce- are users protected when buying and selling in a digital world?
  3. Digital Communication-do users understand various digital communication methods and how to use them appropriately?
  4. Digital Literacy-the process of learning new technologies and sharing with others
  5. Digital Ettiquette- do users consider others when using digital technologies?
  6. Digital Law-are users aware of the laws they must abide by online?
  7. Digital Rights and Responsibilities-do users protect the rights of others and defend their own?
  8. Digital Health and Wellness- understanding the physical and psychological risks when using technology
  9. Digital Security- do users protect their own information and the information of others?
This book does a fantastic job of breaking down the somewhat overwhelming term digital citizenship into 9 distinct areas.  Technology Leaders, Adminstrators, and Educators can all benefit from reading this book to understand the complexity of teaching digital citizenship.