R. Shorter

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Participate 4 – Digital Health

How did you modify your technology habits? What is the most proactive means of ensuring the most balanced blend of technology and well-being?  One of the most positive means of ensuring the most balanced blend of technology and well-being is for users to become aware of the problems that may exist due to improper physical and mental health.  Make sure you understand all health risk involved in being involved in online activities.  The proper postures involved in sitting for a long period of time can, help you to avoid minor or severe discomforts. Do not snack on junk food, know when to take a break, and always avoid internet over usage.

What can students and teachers do to make sure they get the most from technology while simultaneously safeguarding good health?  Teachers should model good posture and proper seating habits during student’s online experiences.  Assigning specific task and monitor student online behaviors and usage.  More importantly, teachers should have a specific set of rules that give students permission before any computer time. Teachers should keep track and record student interactions and task assigned always.   Posting internet usage times and assignments visible in the classroom can be used a reinforcement for student’s responsibilities.



Here is a screen shot of my calendar with my computer breaks and lunch breaks.


Participate 4 – Digital Safety and Security

What is the most important step we can take in terms of ensuring our digital safety?

Using an AUP (Acceptable Use Policy) would be the first step to ensuring digital safety.

School Districts must be willing to put their time and interest in when building a policy that works and protect all involved parties. While reviewing the different websites, I came across a site called a thinline.org at http://www.athinline.org/take-control#defend-your-digital-domain, there was a link to a “Take Control of your Digital Domain.”  This site has resources for students on how and when to report or act on a violation of their rights. The Take Control link also offers resources for teachers and students on bullying, sexting and many other DLC concern.  Resources like these can act as great teaching tools for AUP reinforcement.  Students get to learn how to make better choices when in cyberspace as oppose to running into uncharted territories.

What strategies can we take to help our students consistently keep digital safety in the forefront of their minds?

Teachers can monitor their students’ online behaviors as much a possible.  Another is to provide online safety tools for all students when they enter the classroom.  Teachers sometimes forget about late entering students in “mid year”. Next, Teachers should re-visit AUP during Parent Teacher Conferences as a reminder for Parents to assist schools in monitoring the online safety of all students.

Check out the following video on internet saftey that could be used to assure saftey for all students:




Participate 4 – Digital Rights and Responsibilities

How can a DLC ensure that citizens within the community have access to an environment where an AUP protects members as well as the community itself, where individuals uphold laws, and a cooperative/collective venture provides robust, safe, and ethical resources and opportunities for learning?  DLCs can ensure that citizens in the community have access that is protected by an AUP (Acceptable Use Policy), and expect others to uphold laws to protect them would be to strongly enforce the practice and use of the AUP by educating all who chooses to participate in the DLC.  Citizens within a DLC must be able to interpret the AUP and understand the practices and laws in order to feel safe and to be held to a standard that would maintain high ethical uses and practices. Language must be friendly and free of jargon.  Secondly, DLC must provide ways for citizens, whose rights are violated, a way in which they are confident and free to report wrong doing and that action will take place. This process should be easy and convenient for users.  Bottom line is that people want results.  DLC’s must find a way to stay connected to its community members at all times.

What is the best way to establish and maintain a flourishing DLC where citizens understand, observe, and are inclined to willingly support and ultimately benefit from Digital Rights and Responsibilities?  Start by empowering citizens, giving them opportunities for fair practices, rights and responsibilities.  Provide avenues in which this community interacts with others in a harmonious way. Post Laws and Model behavior on signs in clear view sight as a constant reminder for students in the classroom.  Post Blogs, or hold online discussions on acceptable behaviors vs. non acceptable behaviors online, to keep the intent of the AUP at the center of importance at all times. Secondly, DLC must enforce practices and maintain high expectations from its community. Find a way with students who break the agreement, to clearly understand the consequences involved and publicly share with others students in your DLC community.

Participate 3 – Digital Resources and Netiquette

View my resources on Netiquette on the following link:  Netiquette Do’s & Don’t

Check out my presentation on the 10 Rules of Netiquette

Participate 3 – Accessing Digital Learning Communities

What types of barriers might impede students’ opportunities to access digital learning?

Students that are in economically disadvantaged area have varying levels of computer skills. They have gained these skills through use of utilitizing the computers at school or community locations such as the Public Library. The primary barrier digital learning for most students in economically disadvantaged schools is little or no access to technology. Some students’ interaction with technology is through the use of Smartphones. Another barrier is access to cable services or televisions in students’ homes. Transportation to public libraries to use their computers and internet service also presents another barrier to access digital learning. In conclusion, most students only have access to technology during school time and this access is dependatnt on the availability of technology.

What might we do to eliminate such barriers?

One way we can help eliminate these barriers to accessing technology is by funding the technology program to potentially provide an One-to-One computer initiative. Providing affordable computers such as $100 Chromebooks for every student would be an awesome start. Provide reduced or free access to internet services can also reduce the barries. Finally, get lawmakers and public figures involved in helping improving equitable digital access in our schools and communities.

Participate 2 – Collecting Reputable Digital Resources

What were the three resources I found during my web walkabout?
Web evaluating tool gave me guidelines on how reliable web source should function, appear, and exist as it relates to Digital Literacy Skills.
Media Smart was provided information safety for kids on choosing websites.
Digital literacy and media literacy provide skills, knowledge of technology, and social experiences to participate in a Digital Learning Community.

How can students be taught to safely collect tools and resources that can help them maximize their learning?
Students can use sites such as Media Smarts to provide a guideline into teaching students about the web. Student can also be taught the importance of digital literacy and how to find reliable resources. Students should use sites that provide research tools and teach effective online research.

What policies or procedures might need to be in place to make this possible?
It should be a collective effort with Federal, Local and State governments to set guideline on Digital Community and how they are used.

RShorter’s bookmarks:

Participate 1 – Ideal Digital Learning Communities

My ideal digital learning community (DLC) would be similar to a learning management system with a social media design.  It would take on a similar structure as the learning management system platform because it incorporates the elements needed to share, learn, and discuss.  With this system community members will be able to share lessons and ideas via dropboxes, subject community pages or courses, etc. Members will be able to learn within our DLC by self registering for staff development courses that are hosted by our DLC.  Community members can discuss and collaborate with tools they use everyday such as Twitter, Facebook which are embeded in our DLC.