We, as teachers, are learning about all of this absolutely amazing technology we never had as students in the hopes of teaching students how to use these things in their education and eventually in their career. With all new technology comes challenges. If we let kids bring I-Pods and MP3 Players to school for educational purposes, how do we keep them from just playing with them? How do we keep our students and our own children safe on the web? How do we make sure students are using pictures, images, files, and songs (basically anything downloaded) responsibly? These are all questions that need answers, but we barely have time to learn the technology ourselves, when do we have time to learn this, too?
I never know how to say this: I found (my reader found) (I found through the use of my reader subscriptions) some resources to help us manage this seemingly impossible task.
Safe Schools in a Web 2.0 World Initiative gives us a little food for thought and possibly a little more ammunition for when we try to use new technology (social networking) about which some may be apprehensive. Unfortunately the link in the above post is not working, but I have an email in to get it fixed.
Digital Citizenship and Creative Content is a free curriculum for teachers to use with their students. Though I have signed up, I have not yet had a change to get into the computer lab to use this with students. The units, lessons, and activities can be used in a computer apps class or as stand-alone lessons to be used at appropriate times when using different types of media throughout the year in your specific content. Again, this is all free and you can view an overview here.
Finally, something for which language arts teachers and any teacher who incorporates writing into their curriculum have been waiting...Drum-Roll Please... a plagiarism web-quest and pre-made lessons. Now, this is made for high school students, but I think with very little modification it could be used in middle school and maybe even in elementary schools. This is one-stop-shopping at it's best. Everything is organized and laid-out for you. Plus, it is in a very easy to use format.