Digital persona is a delicate balancing act of keeping yourself close to your real life and yet different, less clear. A digital persona is a chance to give a new perspective on yourself, yet this new version of yourself must keep the respectful mindset of a digital citizenship. Digital citizenship is so much like real citizenship except, that people also have to be aware of how their personal information is shared with the digital world at large. A digital persona is like decoding in reverse, the individual must build how they want others to decode them. They have this power when crafting their digital persona, by using certain words and certain images it creates a mental path that most casual digital decoders will follow. Digital citizenship on the other hand is like meaning making, each person has their own personal understanding of what makes a good citizen, what they have to build up to have others welcome them as a good citizen.
I fulfilled each requirement of this course, so I have tried many different kinds of creative makes, the most obvious being the blogging site itself, but I also tried, Kahoot, Mindomo, and Flipgrid.
The more I was made aware of not only how my words impact others, but the impacts others words can have on me and my actions mattered when online. Without looking at the small details of online articles and posts I will miss out on important details that would help me understand the underlying intentions of the writer(s).
I used basic news sources like CBC, CTV, Global and the Toronto Star and Sun to keep me informed on the comings and goings of the world. I like to check multiple sources to see what they say and build my own opinions off them. I like to also model my digital persona to what I expect a future employer will look for, I’m active enough to seem social, but reserved enough to not look like a bad influence on my future students. I also had many seminars in high school on digital competency, how to edit a profile to show what you want seen, and I took those lessons to heart. I have wanted to be a teacher for years ad because of that I understood that in this new age of technology digital competency is vital component to success. The line of digital competency is also ever changing, it moves as the invention of new technology allows.
Critical digital literacy and the lessons learned in this class will allow me to teach students what I learned here, the lessons that will help in making different media creations. The different programs I encountered in this class gave me a good starting point to create the same sort of introduction of different medias to students. I would love to create a short class maybe once a week for student initiation into different media platforms. Starting in possibly grade five, I would set aside maybe an hour or two in a week to dedicate to learning a new platform or media production in class then giving them the rest of the week until the next class to submit a picture or link of their work. This would make students more willing to learn new media works. I never had this introduction to multiple medias, so I was never very comfortable with learning new material at a fast pace. This is something I don’t want students of mine to go through, is just a digital age. I will like to have at least a few hours a week dedicated to learning about new medias, and being a good digital citizen, this will only become more important as time goes on.
The insight I have about using, analyzing and creating in digital space is that we take it for granted, we don’t look at what we're doing anymore. I have had a Facebook for so many years now that I don’t stop to think that Using Facebook is a digital skill, I’m creating content. My content is personal views and stories, but its all mine, and I use the skills this class talk about every day. I never thought of these skills like digital literacy, and that is why I had so much trouble with developing my ideas for this class. I didn’t understand what counted as literacy; I forgot that it’s a personal opinion on my own skills.
Digital literacy impacted my ability to work with the creative work Mindomo. These readings forced me to understand what I lacked in skill, what categories I needed to work on. Without learning on what a digital literacy learner needs to be successful, I wouldn’t be able to improve on my own skills. Without my skills, I would never be able to teach it to my students, who will need to understand how to decode (navigate, conventions, operations, stylistic, modalities) (Hinrichsen & Coombs, 2014).
The last three weeks reinforced my lack of prior understanding on the subject, and I have had to work to keep learning so I could contribute to the weekly posts and not sound like I didn’t do the readings.
I tried Mindomo because it reminded me of all the times I used the mind map in school on a piece of paper, I wanted to see if this work, as well as the paper version of it, did. (mindomo). I built my mind map around the idea of my resource page, which is English resources, with the focus on ESL. I chose this category because my sister who was a native English speaker needed help with her English because she was in French emersion for grade one and that put her a year behind her peers. She needed to take time with an ESL teacher, which removed her from some of her grade two classes; while it helped her, she also felt excluded from her peers. These resources would accomplish a similar goal while at home. They might have allowed her to remain with her peers, which working on fun sites at home.
My awareness mainly impacted my ability to work with the digital tools, my lack of experience made it harder to not only push myself to try new things but to complete these new works successfully. The Padlet wall was strange to me, looking at others posts showed me that I could have embedded a link within my text, but I didn’t because I didn’t look for a digital tool I could use, but I also didn’t look up how to use Padlet wall.
Since I chose to use Weebly as my blogging site I needed quite a bit of help to get it started, most of the resources I used were created by Weebly to help people like me get started. Bluehost made an excellent five-part YouTube series that I used to help me get started. Once I watched this series, I began to make my blog, and I was content. Until I was expected to respond to a comment on my site, which wasn’t at all straightforward. I tried to figure this out myself for around half an hour until I turned to the Weebly Help Center to see what they had to offer. After reading their comments and watching their video, I was able to find the response section of the site. These sources were incredibly helpful in my digital journey, and I recommend to look into the help center of whatever site is being used, the people who created the site want people like you to use their technology, so they will try to help you on this journey.
I used various online articles to understand the new terminology and the different opinions on ideas I had. Online dictionary sources were helpful to learn the definition on new terms since sometimes words can’t be guessed based on surrounding words. The shorthand on both Twitter and Twitch had to be researched to understand not only what that shorthand or image represents, but also the history behind the words themselves. My meanings are not the only ones that are formed based on what I post on the internet, and I need to be aware of that, this was highlighted by the article for meaning-making. This extension of digital media makes media ever more complex to understand and participate in; by looking to improve understanding of how media is created you as a teacher will be far more prepared to teach in the digital age.
By learning to use and find outside resources I as a future teacher will be able to show students how to look else where for information then encourage them to do the same in all aspects of their lives.
As a daily user of technology, I hadn’t deeply considered what my posts and shares could also mean others than the way I saw it. Sharing a Halloween video with a few culturally appropriated costumes in it can be quite offensive when I went back to re-watch the video. Many things that I hadn’t thought to look at if not for the new lens introduced by these new forms of critical digital literacy. Being more aware in this day and age is only a boon to my online persona, awareness helps us be more respectful and mindful of what our actions do to others. Being a future teacher that awareness if critical to my job, and an important lesson for the future students to learn.
While looking into this topic I found a very interesting Ted Talks about digital skills, it raised great points. Within the first thirty seconds the lecturer said that we are all global citizens that that is only becoming more true as time goes on.
These last two weeks I had to learn quite a few new methods of learning and teaching, the ideas weren’t new, but the fact that they were methods was. These ideas made me look into my online account more closely to see what they were saying regarding meaning-making. They were helpful to help make my reports more professional and acceptable for a future teacher. My posts had their meanings that I may not have meant at the time so to have that possibility pointed out to me was very helpful. Code breaking helps me in everyday university life as I am rapidly introduced to new ideas and new terminology. Even when I didn’t know code breaking was an essential part of teaching I was doing it daily.
My ability to code break came into play as I was learning to use FlipGrid, since I didn't understand the instruction included on the page due to my misinterpretation i had to find a new source to learn from. By looking for a new source and applying critical thinking skills i was ale to figure out how to use FlipGrid so that i could participate in the group discourse.
These frameworks focused more on what the teacher has to teach the students to make sure that the student has a healthy online life. This healthy internet balance is becoming ever more critical due to the increased use of technology in the daily lives of students. As a future teacher, I would like to be able to teach my students how to have this healthy balance, and how to behave online properly. These frameworks only focus on what the student can do, while that isn’t perfect with something as open as the internet it’s the only way to make sure students are aware that they are the only ones that can protect themselves. These two frameworks are all about self-awareness and self-regulation, as a teacher I would have to make sure that the students have the right knowledge to keep themselves safe, but to also be kind on the internet. They will have to have a good understanding of the technology they choose to use.
The fourth and fifth frameworks were the two that most stood out to me for their unique uses in understanding digital literacy. To be an active digital participant you must learn how to define what you are trying to accomplish. The 21st-century educators say that you as a teacher will fit into almost all the six categories teach, technologist, curator, collaborator, experimenter, and scholar. To me, this framework highlights the importance of understanding your strengths as a teacher in relation to learning technologies and learning where you can improve. For instance, the teacher category means that the individual knows how students learn and can design learning activities to fit that style (which will change for year to year), or the experimenter is open to try new learning tools and reflects on what that tool can offer afterwards. Both of which are vital to a productive learning environment. The fifth framework focuses more on what students need to learn to be better digital citizens. The framework highlights seven essential ideas for this: ethics and empathy, privacy and security, community and engagement, digital health, consumer awareness, finding and verifying, and finally making and remixing. These seven aspects of being a digital citizen are critical for students to understand and portray online. Ethics and empathy, for example, are about strengthening socio-emotional skills, the student's ability to make ethical decisions online and to deal with problems like cyber-bullying. Whereas, the digital health example is about: balancing the student’s online life with their real life and to manage their online identity issues like body image. These frameworks help showcase the central ideas teachers must convey to students to make them a healthy and happy online citizen.
Critical digital literacy to me is the ability to look critically at an online work, to not only understand what the content means but what the author or publisher wants you to believe. This definition has allowed me to find biases in published works and to acknowledge those biases. This course is about learning how to teach digital literacy to students and to keep future teachers informed of the latest tools and approaches to achieve this. Being able to think critically is a vital component to being an excellent lifelong learner, it will push you to look for a deeper meaning in the works. If a teacher were to accept all that they are told without trying to learn more about it, they wouldn’t be an outstanding teacher in my mind; a teacher should want to learn as much as they can on what interests their students. For this knowledge will help the teacher engage their students in lessons and activities during class hours.