Each September, all staff and students of my division are required to sign an Acceptable Use of Technology Agreement. The agreement is vast in covering what technology is, privacy and tracing, and access to the division network. The agreement is in part to protect the division:
“Inappropriate use of the Technology may expose the school division to legal liability and/or public embarrassment. The objective of this administrative application is to balance employee and student ability to fully benefit from informative technology against the school division’s need to ensure that all use of the Technology meets the school division’s legal obligations and upholds the Division’s reputation and public image.”
It also lays out the consequences of not using technology appropriately, including discipline in the form of loss of access to technology use, legal action, and financial responsibility.
This agreement is very consequence based. This is what we expect you to do, and if you don’t this is what can happen. It is important to note the consequences. Ultimately, the division needs to protect itself, perception wise, legally, and financially. But there is not much mention of what students should be doing. Teachers need to focus on teaching responsibility in the classroom – here is what we want you to do when using technology. Similar to the positive behavior program we use at our school, we want to catch and reward students for doing the right things.
I wonder what our division’s policy would look like if it were rewritten in a responsibility format. Does anyone have examples of what this looks like in your schools/divisions?
Like Brittney M., the first thing I do when I wake up in the morning is scroll through my emails, messages, and the news. I check various news sites multiple times a day as I like to stay up with what is going on in the world. As such, over the past number of years, I have become fully aware of needing to determine what is real, fake, or biased.
Like many other negative things in this world right now, I blame Trump!! Just kidding. While kind of, but not really. There is no doubt that the Don shifted the information landscape with is campaigns of disinformation and compulsive patterns of blatant lying. (By this point, you are probably picking up on my bias towards him and his cronies. Oh well, my blog, my thoughts right?!?!)
We have spoken a number of times during this course about bias. It is human for us to lean a certain way on issues. I try to fully recognize my political and worldview biases. Therefore, one of the most important things I do during my news checking each day is to visit a variety of sites, purposefully visiting sites that are on both sides of the spectrum. When it comes to international news, my go-tos are CNN and Fox News. While I try not to be too political, in today’s landscape I would definitely lean to the left. Therefore I identify with most of the views held by CNN. I do get frustrated with how left they can lean because I try to critically evaluate what they are reporting, and sometimes they definitely twist things to fit their narrative. Conversely, I usually have to force myself to look at Fox News. As far as American politics go, I just can’t get on the Conservative, right wing train. Due to my bias, I find all that they report on is things to make the Democrats and Biden look back. To be fair, that is all CNN did with Trump, but I find them to be more fair and accurate in what they report. Regardless, the point I’m making is that I think it is important to look at stories from both sides before deciding what to believe.
This may seem like an easy way out, but to be honest the best way that I interpret and analyze the news is by using common sense. I feel like I am up to date on most major things happening in the world, so if I read something that seems a little strange my spidey senses go off. When this happens I do some further research, usually through internet searches. At this point I look for trusted sources…well known media outlets, educational institutions etc. If I can find a similar story on a number of outlets I usually trust that it is true.
I love this blog prompt! As you can see from my title, this topic is allowing me to relate this course to my comfort zone – Physical Education. Let’s be real, Phys. Ed. gets a bum rap from most teachers. However, we take pride in our area and one of our favorite catch phrases is:
Yes, we even put it on shirts!!!
Being physically literate is one form of literacy that many probably forget about. Physical Literacy describes it as “the motivation, confidence, physical competence, knowledge, and understanding to value and take responsibility for engagement in physical activities for life.” It is understanding and knowing how to use your body, not just for sport, but in order to live an active lifestyle. Being physically literate allows one to navigate through life being healthy and safe.
Another important type of literacy, more pertinent to our current discussions is informational literacy. Common Sense Information describes it as the ability to identify, find, evaluate, and use information effectively. As Cymone, Holly and I discussed in this week’s presentation, we are living in a time when informational literacy is becoming critically important. Unfortunately, our skills and our student’s skills might not be where they need to be. I referenced an article that blames the fake news epidemic as an information literacy problem. Many in society don’t know how to interpret or research the accuracy of the information they are reading and therefore believe things that are not true. Furthermore, in our technological world, many go on to share and re-distribute incorrect information.
Just as physical literacy is important for the health and safety of our bodies, informational literacy is important for our health and safety in an online environment. It is impossible to be a good digital citizen without being informationally literate.