As I sit here and reflect over the past 5 weeks, I cannot believe that it has only been 5 weeks. This course was by far the most work-heavy class I have taken thus far, and I only have 2 classes left before graduating. This course was not only assignment heavy, but reading heavy and writing heavy. It was a lot to do in 5 weeks for me personally, as a mother to two young boys with a full-time job. However, I do see the value and importance of this course because knowing the ins and outs of digital citizenship is vital for anyone who wants to be in a role where they are digital leaders.
I learned about digital citizenship from Ribble's (2015) three principles of Respect, Educate and Protect, which he broke down into nine elements. I would say that I learned most about the copyright laws because I truly did not know much about that, and what I thought I knew (teachers were free to use whatever, whenever) was actually not true.
My biggest accomplishment and best work during this course was probably my cumulative presentation video that I created using a new platform to me, Biteable. I really liked creating my video and did so with my teachers, parents, and students in mind. This video is definitely something I plan to share with them. The biggest challenges I faced during this course was just the sheer amount of reading and assignments due each week. I really felt like each assignment took so much work and effort, but were worth so little points, the saying "nickeled and dimed to death" comes to mind because each week there were several parts of the assignment, each worth only 12 or fewer points.
I definitely already see how this course is affecting me in my current role as the Innovative Learning Specialist. After week 1 I shared with my teachers Ribble's (2015) 9 elements of a good digital citizen and after week 3 shared with them Jorgensen's (n.d.) educational fair use flow chart for teachers. Knowing that digital citizenship is more than just cyberbullying and that teachers are not free to use whatever materials they want will help me to continue growing as an educational leader.
I have also created a cybersafety flyer for my district after taking this course that my district is sharing out with parents and staff.
My favorite aspect of this course was the copyright laws week. I think that is so important to understand as digital leaders and learners. The one thing I would change about this course is making the copyright week more than one week. I feel like it should be two weeks long, or perhaps even its own course by itself. We really only had time to scratch the surface regarding the copyright laws.
My suggestion to anyone getting ready to take this course is to plan to do some reading every single day. This is not the course where you can knock everything out in a day or two. It really takes every single bit of free time you have, plus some. I would tell my friends that while this course is vital, it was a lot of information to soak in, in a very fast and furious kind of way.
Jorgensen, L. (n.d.). Educational fair use: a flow chart for teachers. Retrieved from https://www.bisdtx.org/cms/lib/TX02218757/Centricity/Domain/43/fair-use-map.pdf
Ribble, M. (2015). Digital citizenship in schools: Nine elements all students should know (3rd ed.). Eugene, OR: International Society for Technology in Education