Saturday, October 13, 2012

Take the digital out of citizenship

During the Learning 2.012 conference, I attended a session on Digital Citizenship by Clint Hamada.

The first question Clint posed to the group was what is digital citizenship? Hamada's argument is that there is no such thing. It is just citizenship. In other words, what a person writes on a facebook account or any form of social media, should be guided by what it means to be a responsible and respectful citizen. 

Hamada's viewpoint is we should remove the digital from citizenship. He states it is all about community. Citizenship online should be viewed through the lens of three windows; to think critically, to behave responsibly and to finally behave safely. 

During the discussion, the age old premise of 'do unto others as you would unto yourself' came up. Hamada pointed out that this concept can be found in many cultures and provides a good starting point when discussing citizenship online with students. Balance, copyright, footprint and community were also mentioned as key facets of citizenship.

The good news is that any character or ethical education program can easily link into the above. The most salient point of the presentation was that open is better. Educate rather than restrict is the best approach. 

Friday, October 5, 2012

The SAS Vision for Technology

There has been a lot of "buzz" around the use of technology this school year at SAS. From iPad use in Grade 1 to student blogs in HS Chemistry, there is exciting, dynamic and innovative learning happening across the school. Last year a Strategic Plan for Educational Technology was developed to articulate the schools' goals and direction. Below is an excerpt from the plan that highlights some of our overarching goals.

Technology serves as a dynamic tool for learning that optimizes  productivity, connectivity, collaboration and creativity. One of the aims of the educational technology plan is to bring to life our technology vision and to connect our plan to our existing mission, vision and learning principles. The key areas of the SAS Vision for technology are identified below with more specific explanation as to what each area means in the SAS context.

When technology is integrated into the teaching and learning environment in meaningful and purposeful ways the following new learning opportunities will be created:


  • Improved 21st century skills in the context of core subjects and knowledge areas.
  • Enhanced engagement and achievement in all academic and core subject areas.
  • Engaged and Responsible Citizens (SAS DSLO)

  • Increased connection of core subject and curricular areas to real world opportunities and experiences.
  • Increased opportunities for  students and teachers to connect and communicate with other students, educators and experts around the globe.
  • Effective Communicators (SAS DSLO)

  • Increased opportunities for collaboration and communication inside and outside of school and classrooms.
  • Improved collaboration and communication skills using 21st century tools and learning environments.
  • Exemplary Character with the Ability to Work Independently and Collaboratively (SAS DSLO)


  • Encourage and promote creativity and innovation by integrating digital tools in a 21st century learning environment.
  • Promote a variety of forms of expression that utilize digital tools and platforms best suited to individuals learning styles
  • Critical and Creative Thinkers (SAS DSLO)

Throughout the year we will use this blog to try to showcase examples around the school that exemplify our vision for technology and learning.