Wednesday, May 7, 2014

COETAIL Course 2, Final Project, Responsible Use Agreements

Photo Credit: ToGa Wanderings via Compfight cc In my Master's Program, COETAIL,   I was assigned to do collaborative assignment, with another teacher, at another school.  I found a partner on Google+, in the same course.  My partner and I worked on Option 1 of the Assignment, to create a Responsible Use Agreement.
"Option 1: In a small group that contains at least one cohort member outside your school, create a Responsible Use Agreement (RUA) for your division level (Elementary, Middle or High School). You may start from scratch or use a framework from some of the resource that are covering in the course or from what your school already has in place. Include a reflective blog post describing choices you made in developing the RUP i.e. choice of language level, topics covered, issues of focus, describe how it would be shared with students etc."
I worked with a teacher in Myanmar, Ivory Chang, over a Google Hangout chat.  We looked at each other's schools Responsible Use Agreements, looked at what we liked, and didn't like. We came across this template, from NetSafe NZ, which is a Creative Commons licensed Responsible Use Agreement, meant to be used by schools to adapt for their own use.  We liked the positive language used, and decided to adapt it for our assignment. Here is our final outcome.

Tuesday, May 6, 2014

It's a Small World


The Universe is expanding, but our world is getting smaller.

The above image is an assemblage from the Cassini Space Probe, credited here.
With the power of the internet, we can push into details of the world we could never find published in books, magazines, and other places.  We can learn to communicate in new ways.  We can find out about ideas and concerns that others have.  We can learn new skills, right at our fingertips.  We can find lots of things, and remix them into new things. I live in South Korea, and... I don't speak Korean, and cannot read Hangul.  But due to Web Apps like Google Translate,  I can sometimes make sense of what I see around me.  Here, translate my blog into another language.

This is a translation example for Google Translate.

I have a family, with two small kids, who love to get around.  Thanks to the power of the internet, We can get directions, find parks, and other great things to do.  Like this little blog, Kids Fun in Seoul.  It gives you information on things going on, what is good about the place, and how to get there. It has a fantastic interactive map, that shows you where things are... View Seoul Map for Kids & Families in a larger map
The internet can help to make you "Happy" You can find music, artists, and many creatives you may never have seen without it. The link above is the Australian band, John Butler Trio, covering Pharrell William's song, "Happy".

 The internet can help to fix important issues.

The internet can provide a way to promote change... and that issue, is important.  Maybe not the most important issue,  but something that has to change. With the internet, I can learn to use the internet better.  Just in writing this blog, I used Google to help research methods for embedding some of the gadgets used here. Here are some of those links.
Embedding a Youtube link from a specific time.
Embedding Google Translate
Embedding Google Map
Finally, the power of the internet allows us to be more creative.  The possibilities are endless.  Here is a remix of images from the Cassini Mission, against Nine Inch Nails, "Ghosts".  Science and Music combine to make Art, through the power of the internet.

 
  CASSINI MISSION from Chris Abbas on Vimeo.

This has been Cross Blogged, from my COETAIL blog.

Sunday, May 4, 2014

Remove the "Cyber" from Cyberbullying


 
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I was reading this posted question on Louise Phinney's Blog, about removing the "Digital" that we associate with things like Digital Citizenship, and Digital Footprints.  I commented on her blog about this idea, and I thought I'd continue that idea here.

Remove the Cyber from Cyberbullying.  Why? Because kids disconnect that what they are doing is Bullying.

I think that Bullying is Bullying, no matter where it is done.  The problem is that most kids understand what Traditional Bullying is, and think it is wrong. There is a disconnect from actions online being bullying.  Kids think that they are having a joke, but the receiver doesn't think it is funny. Raychelle Cassada Lohmann discusses the proportions of kids that do Cyberbullying vs Traditional Bullying in her article.
"Cyberbullying is a big problem, even more common than traditional bullying. About 25 to 30 percent of the young people surveyed admitted experiencing or taking part in cyberbullying, but only 12 percent said the same about traditional bullying. To top it off, 95 percent of the youth said that what happened online was meant to be a joke and about 5 percent was actually meant to harm someone."
That 95% troubles me.  They do not understand that a joke can be taken another way, in a bad way.  It also troubles me that a joke gets spread online, other users repeat it, or jump in on the joke.  The rumor or joke spreads quickly, making the comments worse.  Online, bullying gets messy in a hurry.  So here are my tips about combating Bullying online.

Tips for Better posting. Send better messages.

It starts with the message sender.  What you post matters.  Who you post it to matters.  How you post it, again, matters.

  1. My parents always told me that Good Manners are for everywhere, use them online too.  If you can't type it politely, than maybe it shouldn't be posted.
  2. Please, Thank you, Your Welcome... should be used as much as possible.  When they are used, it is more difficult to communicate a nasty message.
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 3.  Use Emoticons or Emoji to show emotion or expression, when texting short messages.   In face to face communication, you can get a bigger picture of the context of the message.  With Emoticons, you send the person your mood... to help give some context to the meaning.  But short messages, often miss out on clues to show your meaning.  Some rights reserved on above image 

 4.  Another movement, the Sarcasm Font, is for showing some of your other meanings.
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5. Jokes should be funny to both people.  If it is meant to be a joke, share it in a Peer to Peer message, rather than on a group message board.  That way, if it isn't taken well, it isn't spread far.

6.Don't post anything online that you wouldn't mind your parents seeing.

7.Most importantly, treat others as you want to be treated. Think before you click. Look at what your posting or uploading and ask "Would I want someone saying or putting that about me online?" If the answer is "No" then don't do it.

Tips for the Reciever.  I didn't like that message.

Not every bad message is Bullying, but know what to do if you are being bullied.

  1. Choose your friends wisely.  "Unfriend" and block users.  You do not have to be friends with everyone.
  2. Re-read the message for understanding.  Are they just having a joke?  Maybe let them know that you did not appreciate the comment.
  3. Save all evidence if you're being bullied. Don't delete without keeping a copy for yourself. Screen Shots are great for this.
  4. Don't respond to rude messages.
  5. If someone angers you, wait, don't fire off a rude comeback. It'll only make things worse.
  6. Tell a trusted adult about the messages.
  7. Contact host/site providers if inappropriate material is being posted on their site.

I saw someone being bullied online.  What should I do?

Don't take a backseat, and let things happen in front of you.

  1. Take a screenshot.  Gather some evidence.
  2. Don't join in, but if you know someone who's being a cyberbully tell her/him to knock it off, if they don't report it.
  3. Tell a trusted adult about the messages.
  4. Contact host/site providers if inappropriate material is being posted on their site.
Some of the above tips have been adapted from Raychelle Cassada Lohmann's article.

This has been Cross Blogged from my COETAIL Blog