Special Education

Special Education

Thursday, August 9, 2012

Tool #10

Our Life Skills students will very likely have problems reading and digesting information dealing with digital citizenship from normal resources. We would need to break it down into understandable and basic ideas. We could create a set of Digital Rules in the same manner we display Classroom Rules. We would have 4 or 5 of the most likely rules that could be broken and also those that a Life Skill student will most likely understand. Of course, teachers and aides will have to do their due diligence in closely monitoring the students while they are using the technology. 

I think that Life Skills students will be less "devious" than regular students but they also will be more likely to cross the line unknowingly. I think that in the classroom, the students should understand that they are to do the thing that they are assigned to do and not to go off task and play a different game or go to movie or music video website. I don't think that they will likely be using the email system. When they are using the computer for their break or reward time, they should stay away from violent or other inappropriate sites. A couple of the higher level students are familiar with social networking sites such as Facebook but I'm not sure if they can access these pages when logged in under their name. Obviously, if we are using Facebook as a tool in the classroom, they should understand that they will only use it for the classroom intended purpose. 

We also should teach them digital citizenship outside of school as well. We should emphasize the dangers of talking to people they do not know and to posting things that they should not post. We should also conference with the parents and let them know that their children may be learning some new technology skills and that they may be more likely to encounter possible dangers at home. This way the parents can monitor them at home as well. 

I really don't think that a typical Life Skills student will understand the copyright and fair use policy well but we can help them when they may need to copy images for a project, etc. Likewise, I don't see the need for them to worry much about citing sources or valid websites for information. If there ever comes a situation in which a source needs to be vetted, it will most likely be done with the teacher at hand. 

I think that Wes Fryer's Moving at the Speed of Creativity blog may be useful in teaching some of the more relevant and teachable concepts in his section on Internet Safety and Digital Citizenship Presentations.

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