Digital Citizenship involves participating and acting responsibly online. It includes everyone using technology. Thus, it is not age-specific. For this reason, there is a need for instructors to teach digital citizenship at all grade levels.
In Saskatchewan schools, there is a policy guide for schools to implement digital citizenship education from kindergarten to grade 12. This is because technology has become a part of human life in all aspects, and we cannot do away with it. The guide promotes digital citizenship by shifting from don’ts to do’s, which is a good way of promoting digital citizenship as we are in the tech world.
Digital citizenship education in Saskatchewan is based on Ribble’s nine elements of digital citizenship. I seek to explore a connection between the Saskatchewan curriculum and digital citizenship. I will examine the Saskatchewan English Language Arts Curriculum by focusing specifically on grade 1.
The Saskatchewan English Language Arts 1 Curriculum has three key outcomes that include
- Comprehend and respond
- Compose and create
- Assess and reflect
Each has its indicators, and it encourages the use of multimedia and technology to achieve the above. I will highlight two of the indicators from the second outcome.
- CC1.1a and CC1. 2f
From both indicators, it is observed that students will be using technology in their learning, and also engage with others. It is, therefore, significant for educators to teach grade 1 learners about digital citizenship, as it will create awareness of cybersecurity and internet safety before carrying out any tasks.
This is what I will promote in my classroom. In any activity related to technology, I will take few minutes to highlight the importance of staying safe and practicing good digital citizenship. Also, I will model what I teach, not only in the classroom but on all platforms.