Thursday, January 1, 2009

Remembering Digiteen

Miller Reflects on Digiteen

Wiki Editing and Authentic Research
For my Digiteen project, I was assigned the topic Digital Etiquette. I never really thought about digital etiquette until I began researching the topic. Digital Etiquette is a very important factor in Digital Citizenship. Digital Etiquette, which is also called netiquette, is the way that people act online. My sub-topic was adults. I researched the way that adults use Digital Etiquette while on the internet in their everyday lives. I discovered that a lot of adults do not really know what digital etiquette is so they tend to not use it. I found a good description of digital etiquette from an Edutopia website.

This website has a great summary of netiquette and how people tend to use it. Learning about digital etiquette has better helped me to understand the internet more. Not only am I more educated in the ways to use the internet, but also I am ready to teach other people the correct ways to act on the internet starting with Digital Etiquette. I am so glad that I got to participate in this project.

The members of digital etiquette did an absolutely amazing job on the wiki. Everyone in the group contributed. One of our greatest strengths was being able to understand the topic. Everyone had a great idea of what digital etiquette really was and used their own opinions to make the wiki great. Everyone also was very good at putting the information into terms that can be easily understood. We also communicated very well. We left a total of thirty-nine discussions on the discussion tab. Everyone shared their ideas which was great, and when someone offered an idea, people listened and they gave it a chance. The only weakness that I believe that we had was the fact that, coming from different countries, we spelled words differently. This is only an ant hill compared to the mountain of strengths that we had. No one person excelled in our group. Everyone excelled! Christina, Tiffany, Maddi, Dhabyah, Fatma, Anjie, Tyler S., and Mason W. were responsible for making the fantastic wiki page. They all made countless edits, and put some great information onto the wiki. I would like to thank everyone in the group. They all did a wonderful job, and I am so glad to have had a chance to work with every single one of them. The digital etiquette wiki would not have been possible without them.

My Personal Learning Network(PLN) was very helpful in the making of our wikis. I was able to add a special tab and put specific links on them. I put links to the discussion and blog posts on the Digiteen Ning. I also put links to the discussion page and edits page on the wiki. Another cool thing that I was able to do was add links to Google News on my topic, digital etiquette or netiquette. Being able to use my Igoogle page was so helpful. I was able to go to my Igoogle page and then take a shortcut directly to the site I was trying to get to. It was so convenient. Diigo bookmarks were also very helpful because I was able to bookmark a specific article about my topic and those links would go directly to my topic wiki. These were so helpful because the links will take you directly to the section of the article that you bookmarked. I am so glad that I have a PLN to help organize my lessons.

Action Project
For my Digiteen action project, my team members and I used a program called Google Lively to teach middle school students about Digital Citizenship. Our main objective was to create a new generation of students who are able to navigate through the internet safely and comfortably. We used Google Lively because it was a virtual world that we had experimented in and personally had a lot of fun with. It had a lot of the tools that we needed to be able to teach our lessons safely. It also gave us the option to make it a private space, which was very helpful. Tyler R. created many different rooms that we used in our teaching. They are all very fun and interesting, which made the teaching experience easier for us, and the learning experience easier for the seventh grade as well. We picked the seventh graders to teach because they were a good age to teach. We felt that they would also be able to understand the information that we were teaching better, and not having been taught anything like this before, we were able to mold them into good digital citizens. I am so glad that we chose to teach that class because they were so cooperative, very respectful, and listened to what we taught them. Their cooperation is greatly appreciated. While we were doing our project, we recorded the things that we did onto an action wiki. On this wiki, we put our goals of the project, a brief summary of how each lesson went, and quotes from the seventh graders on how they enjoyed the wiki. This wiki was very helpful in being able to record all of our ideas and help us to prepare for the next lesson.

I believe that our project went great. We accomplished everything we wanted and then some. The seventh graders learned so much, and they had a lot of fun doing it. We wanted our classes to be able to learn and have fun while doing it. I also think that it made a lot of the students interested in programs like Lively and other programs that the internet might offer like Gmail and Igoogle. The one improvement that I would like to have had was be a little more organized in our lessons. Sometimes, we would encounter problems such as the students not having an account with a program, or one something freezing up on the internet. These are just a few improvements compared to the giant success that we had. I believe that all schools should offer digital citizenship classes. With the internet growing more and more every day, kids will one day have to use it for most everything that they do. My personal goal from this project is to influence other schools to offer programs like ours. If every child in the world got as much teaching as our students got, then our next generation will be educated in the ways of digital citizenship.

If I could describe my action project team in one word, I would say extraordinary. Each one of the people on the team worked long and hard to make sure that we had correct lesson plans, Lively was set up on computers, and all kinds of other things that made our project flow smoothly. I think that being able to meet a little bit more and having more time together to prepare and share our ideas would improve this process because it would allow us to be more organized in our lessons. I have to brag on Tyler R. Tyler R. probably did more work on Lively than anybody. He created every single room that we used to teach, and decorated them. He knew more about the rooms and how to create them than anybody in our school. He took the time to design the rooms according to what lesson we were teaching that day. Another person the I want to mention is Trent H. Trent devised all of the lesson plans, and made each and every lesson plan great. He gave us all great ideas that we used to teach. Hope B., Jordan B., and Sydnee S. were all very organized. Because of their skills, everything went smoothly and we were able to keep up with our thought. Pate C. and Mason W. did a great job at editing the wiki. They kept it up to date with our latest lessons. Tanner B., Mason J., and Nolan R. did an outstanding job with the parent permission forms. They met the deadline and made wonderful forms. I thank my team so much for making the project great!

Digital Citizenship
I absolutely believe that digital citizenship should be discussed and taught in schools. The internet is such a vital tool in today's society. Hospitals, small businesses, and some schools are beginning to drift into the new age of technology. We have to face the facts that one day, our children are going to have to use the internet. We need to make it easy for them. We need to teach them about digital citizenship. We have to show them how to behave online and be respectful to people online. We do not need to leave them abandoned online. We need to show them. Schools need to offer educational websites like Woogi World, which teaches kids about digital citizenship. We need to guide children in the right direction. The future is coming. It is full of technology, and it will not wait on everybody to learn. Hopefully, our project will lead the way, and set an example for all schools to educate their students about digital citizenship.

I learned a lot of things from this project, but the most important thing that I learned was respecting other peoples' cultures. I met kids from Qatar, Australia, Bangladesh, and Canada, just to name a few. As I began talking to them, I learned all types of things. I learned what kind of sports they play, what their favorite colors are, what they like to do on the weekends, and so much more. Learning all of those things taught me about their cultures, and about how to be respectful to them. I am so glad that I got to participate in this experience, and I know that the things I learned with Digiteen will help me with the rest of my life. I enjoyed every single minute of it. I would like to thank everyone for making this project such a great experience. Being able to participate in it was truly a blessing. Thank you Mrs. Vicki for allowing us to be involved with such a great group of people. Thank you everyone. You made it truly amazing.

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