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Authentic or Not

As educators, we know that engagement and relationships are crucial to student success. In addition to this…

How do we continue to connect with our students in a healthy way that meets the needs of our learners? How do we do this in an authentic, meaningful, current, and relevant way? Are we prioritizing the ethical implications for our students?

Currently, we are educating students on digital citizenship and the proper use of technology. In Chapter 2 of the article, Beware: Be Aware–The Ethical Implications of Teachers Who Use Networking Sites to Communicate, the author states, “Teachers are in a difficult position of trying to innovate in their classroom using SNSs while at the same time being conscious of the risks.” Sharing this perspective ethically draws out so many more questions. Reflecting on how I have communicated with my families and the platforms I use has brought me to ask myself; What is the purpose of sharing? Am I being authentic? Am I posting to share or in ways to make myself look good? As I read through the article and unwrapped my reflections on this topic, it’s interesting to reflect on how I’ve used technology to reach families. Indeed part of communicating is meeting the families with various tools to get the students’ families. It depends on the school and the community’s needs to determine the best platform to communicate. The chapter clearly shares the need for educators to be grounded in “understanding the agreements of SNS platforms is crucial to effective communication practices.” Does every lesson need to be grounded in a social media platform or a technology tool? Or does engagement connect with students through relationships? These questions were pondered as I read through Chapter 2: Beware: Be Aware–The Ethical Implications of Teachers Who Use Networking Sites to Communicate. Interestingly, communicating with my parents and students was always a priority; however, the ethical and moral implications were not top of my priorities.

What grounds your pedagogy?

What grounds my practice?


Not only is connecting to the land important and a connection that guides my practice, I’m now realizing that the ethics around how I am connecting digitally must also be a priority in my practice.

Chapter two: Beware: Be Aware–The Ethical Implications of Teachers Who Use Networking Sites to Communicate breaks down the information teachers should pay attention to Privacy, Data Security, and Informed Consent.


Data Security

Informed Consent

These areas will significantly impact my path regarding what platforms I choose to use. I have to admit, as a mother, I didn’t check off the box for my daughters’ media release form. I was hesitant about her privacy and identity being shared in ways out of my hands. I have changed my outlook on children’s privacy since becoming a mother. As the article shares, “educational integrity” matters, and ultimately educators need to teach families about the privacy settings on the platforms they choose to use.

“Teachers who model effective use of positive communication skills with SNSs remain consistent with the rights and responsibilities placed upon them as professionals.”

Beware:Be Aware-The ethical Implications of Teachers who use SSNs

In the article, Ethics of Teaching with Social Media, ethics is defined as ” a moral choice, which means that teachers have to ultimately decide their own responses to the dilemmas.” Reflecting on this and the chart below shows the essential issues that educators need to consider. I have stopped posting pictures of students on Twitter as I don’t feel it’s my place to share students’ identities. AS THE CHART EXPLAINS, I will cover their face and respect their anonymity if I share photos. I work in a diverse community, and I wonder if all families really understand what they sign in terms of the media release form. Being transparent with families and making sure they know the tools and platforms is essential and our responsibility. This chart on the Ethics of Teaching with Social Media by Henderson, Auld, and Johnson should bring transparency and continue to normalize the conversations needed in schools with other colleagues and families.;jsessionid=9BED0F8668B0CF77F1402CAD803E12A6?doi=

Final Post – Major Project Journey

Wow, this has been quite a fantastic journey. Not only have I developed skills to share with my students and colleagues, but my knowledge base has also grown to be a confident parent, specifically in this area. I used Twitter during the pandemic for my classroom, but that was the degree of my technology experience. I would say I dabbled in WeVideo, but I did not have the understanding I needed as an educator up until this class. I am beyond grateful to Dr. Alec Couros and all my classmates! hiy hiy

My Major project journey started off a certain way; however, it continued to evolve and shift as I gained more knowledge from our class. My understanding of Digital Citenzship was limited, but I started to shift my perspective and became very open and eager for this newfound knowledge. Originally I wanted to delve into WeVideo Classroom, which I did. However, I realized I loved teaching lessons around digital literacy to our students. As I listened to the needs of my school and my students, I realized that we needed to learn about digital literacy and citizenship as a whole and ground our students in this learning. Every other week I began connecting with Amanda Brace and chatting about digital citizenship and technology in the classroom. I read Dr. Mike Ribble and Marty Parks’ book, Digital Citizenship Handbook for School Leaders. I was excited to read this book and share this knowledge in weekly conversations with our staff and teachers. Following this, I began teaching explicit lessons on digital citizenship. I loved using the resources from Common Sense Education as a springboard to begin normalizing these conversations in our school. I would stare at our tech tubes in the classrooms and think to myself: do the students even understand the importance of these technology tools and how to be safe online?

My Digital Citizenship Pedagogy and My Land-Based Philosophy; Together, Let’s Educate and Empower

My worldview is shifting and continually changing, evolving into a space that leaves me wondering, earning, and striving for more.  I believe there is power in the connection between knowledge and spirit. Connecting Digital Citizenship and Media Literacy into my teaching practice has become an imperative component. Teaching intentional lessons gives our students a healthy and educated view on digital literacy.

Furthering this, digital citizenship connects to students with their online identity. Their online presence is important and must be taught, modeled, and made a priority within our school settings. Common Sense Education offers lessons for grades K-12 on educating students in a safe and relatable manner. This is a great place for teachers to guide their teaching practice on digital identity. As educators, we can easily connect digital citizenship to cross-curricular outcomes. We can empower students to navigate the digital world safely and confidently. Connecting culturally responsive education along with digital citizenship will benefit our students and foster an authentic learning journey. Below you will see the roadmap of Digital Citizenship lessons I created for my students.

My Roadmap of Digital Citizenship Lessons for Elementary Students

Not only did I create a roadmap of lessons for myself and my colleagues, but I also engaged in the lessons by teaching them. Engaging in conversations with students helped me understand the content I was teaching. This normalized the language we were using in our building around digital citizenship.

Technology Platform/SupportsLessons I Implemented
Common Sense Education
Common Sense Education
Try and Teach
Common Sense EducationOnline Safety
Creating In All Ways
Drumming Reflection
MentimeterReflection #1
Reflection #2
My Teaching Roadmap

Educational Tools I have Discovered and Implemented

Creating with Canva

Canva is a tool that educators can create lessons and templates in a creative way for students.

Informational Posters I made to share with my staff and colleagues.

Educational Poster #1 that supported the lessons I taught on Digital Literacy with the support from Common Sense Eduation.

Educational Poster #2 that supported Digtial Literacy Skills for Grade 1-3 students.

Professsional Resources – Mind Map

Looking to re-engage your students in the classroom, check out WeVideo and WeVideo Classroom!

We Video

Using WeVideo as a professional resouce (Post #1) has been instrumental in my journey. It is a way to connect Indigenous Epistemlogy with a reflective process. This is an authentic way for educators to connect with Elders while using a technology platform to reflect with. I discovered quickly how effctive WeVideo was to connect Digital Citizenship. (Post #2) Mike Ribble’s elements

WeVideo offers an opporutnity through their narrate option to record your students thoughts and engage them in the writing process(Post #3). The narrate option provides a differentiation option for students of all levels to enage in an indvidualized proces

Easy to Follow Steps to navigate WeVideo (Post #4)

Privacy Settings for WeVideo from the WeVideo Cite

WeVideo Classroom (Post#5)

School Book Study – See Link Below Image

When you see a teacher who is reflective and constantly asking why, why am I doing this with technology, how does this add a layer to what we might have done with a traditional tool across the years, and really looking at is this a time for technology or is there a better way to do it?” (Audet, 2019)
Blog- Book Study

Learning and Leading with new knowledge is significant for educators to stay current with practices. Dr. Mike Ribble’s book guides educators to learn digital techniques that connect our learners with critical thinking and a digital mindset.

“Today, it is not if you will be part of the digitally connected mainstream, it is when.”

Dr. Mike Ribble and Marty Par

Hands on Teaching

Learning alongside the students was important to me and an authentic way to teach the importance of Digital Citizenship and Media Literay. Teaching the lessons below, using Common Sense Education has helped build and ground my Digital Citizen Pedagogy. It has and will continue to be an important part of my teaching practice. Learning WeVideo, WeVideo Classroom and Mentimeter has deepened my understanding of technology and helped me implement and ground the knowledge in an authentic manner.

  • In closing, I believe in engaging students in their learning. My journey has evolved and changed. I am a very hands-on learner, and the lessons and blogs I shared were authentically implemented through the classes I taught and conversations with my colleagues. Being a responsive teacher, I now can move forward with new knowledge to lead the students I work with. Many students have not attended school throughout these past few years and are very reluctant to learn. Moving forward, I am confident that technology is a tool that can engage and channel creative outlets in our students. We need to keep our classrooms current and exciting. Finally, I am leaving this class feeling equipped to teach digital citizenship and utilize the technology tools that make learning meaningful and engaging for our students.

WeVideo Classroom

It was great to push in and support the middle years’ classroom and teach them how to use WeVideo and WeVideo Classroom. WeVideo Classroom can be connected to google classroom, and teachers can create as many classes as they wish. I enjoyed that the students could be engaged through this platform and discover a creative outlet they may not have known existed. This is an excellent addition to WeVideo and is highly user-friendly. See below for a quick demo if you are interested.

Benefits of implementing WeVideo

  • Collaborative- connected to students as it is a board-approved application
  • Engaging- offers students a tool that provides stock videos, pictures, music, and a text feature that can convey their ideas.
  • User Friendly- step by step instructions
  • Differentiated- provides opportunities for students to orally share their ideas, narrate stories, and creatively engage in their learning.
  • Creative outlet-allows students who may be reluctant to re-engage in learning
  • Regina Public School Board Approved Apps – free to use and approved for safety and security.
  • Students Reflections

Student 1 – “I felt comfortable reading my stories.”

Student 2 – “It was easy to drag pictures into the row.”

Student 3 -” I wasn’t bored doing my assignment.”

Student 4 – ” I didn’t know I was creative until I used this tool.”


Major Project – Let’s Keep the Conversations Going

Normalizing conversations around Digital Citizenship has become a priority throughout my personal and professional life. I am discovering how there is some common knowledge around terms such as technology, wifi, data, computer, iPad, fake news, social media, chat rooms, and online. The overarching theme, ‘digital citizenship,’ seemed missing throughout the conversations. As I discussed and asked what is digital citizenship to Grade 3/4 students, they were familiar with some of the terms and were curious to learn more. Common Sense Education shares some excellent tools that I shared with the students and helped initiate our conversations. Common Sense Education has some great information on, This is Me, which allows depicting our identity online and offline. Sharing these videos and having these conversations with children will build context and create a safe place to discuss.

Spring School Book Club – Our school has been very responsive to our discussions around digital citizenship and media literacy. We will be a spring book talk on Mike Ribble and Marty Parks’ book, Digital Citizenship Handbook for School Leaders. The students are gaining some knowledge in this area, and I’m thankful the teachers are on board to start engaging in these conversations. As a team, we can learn together and create new learning opportunities.

Major Project Update – WeVideo – Re-engaging Students

Working alongside middle years students is a new venture for me. However, relationships are key and as a responsive teacher, it can be difficult to build new lessons when the relationship hasn’t been built. Working alongside these students, it was apparent how quickly their projects came to life through WeVideo.

Digitally Moving Through My Day

A Visual of My Digital Day

Using the podcast format in WeVideo is an efficient way to share my thoughts on navigating my day digitally. What an amazing tool for students to brainstorm their ideas for writing and storytelling!

Check out my explanation:

Common Sense Education shares valuable tools for students to find balance with technology devices. I have been teaching lessons to the grade 1-5 students on digital literacy and am constantly reminded that I too need to work on my relationship with technology.

Creating harmony and balance seems to be a trend in this stage of my life. Whether it is balancing mom life, wife life, work life, and doing my master’s, it is apparent that all phases need to have strategies and tools in place in order to create a healthy, harmonious lifestyle. Along with this would be instilling healthy habits for my daughter and students around digital citizenship. I see the value and purpose of technology in our world. I believe it is on me now as a mother and educator to implement educational tools. Common Sense Education has guided me in this journey and helped me build healthy conversations around digital citizenship.

“Technology in the classroom can be extremely disruptive”


  “The leadership has to start with spending some time in the classroom with kids and being in their footsteps and using the tools that they’re using and looking at it from their perspective ”

(audet, 2019)

After reading the article, Ethical Issues With Using Technology In The Classroom I was reminded of the technological growth that is happening. Doug Johnson states, “technology in the classroom can be extremely disruptive”. Drawing on this notion, it is apparent that any tool that isn’t properly implemented in a healthy way can become disruptive. So, as I enter the classrooms and discuss digital citizenship it is evident that more work needs to be done. Continuing to educate myself and my students in the area of ethics will help all of us develop an awareness and skills to implement into our daily lives.

“Ethics has always been at the core of creating a thriving learning environment”

Ethical Issues With Using Technology in the classroom

Some personal strategies I am now using to validate the information I receive in terms of my classroom would be Common Sense Education for fact-checking images. This was one area I wanted to grow in. MediaSmarts offers excellent articles, lessons, and tools to help educators such as myself to implement digital literacy in the classroom. For example, MediaSmarts shares,Promoting Ethical Online Behaviours with Your Kids,” which is a relative topic and ties to the etiquette and respect piece online.

Where do I get my news? Honestly lately I have been avoiding the news. Sounds terrible I’m sure, however, I get so wrenched with anxiety about our worldly affairs and inequities around that sometimes I need to go off-grid and avoid the news. Currently, I do feel I am becoming more equipped with tools and strategies to support the information I am listening to. Fact-checking resources and guides have become very helpful for me and building my confidence in this area. Misinformation and disinformation: A Guide to Protecting Yourself offers great tools to help sift through information. For myself, I have begun to verify the sources, dates and look into the background of the story. This helps identify common followers or the political push behind much information. This may be just a start for me but I am aware and intentionally navigating it with an educated eye. I look forward to learning more on this topic and consciously being aware of what I am taking in. Thinking critically about what we read and see online is an important part of being a good digital citizen.

Major Project Update

Following Willie Ermine’s presentation yesterday, I sent out a quick Mentimeter question for the staff to respond to. I realize this may be a tool that people are already familiar with, however, for me, I had never used it and definitely see the purpose. Here are the responses so far….

Easy and Engaging

Intentional and Interactive

Collects data quickly

Visually Esthetic

Fun Assessment

Media Literacy

The article, “What is media literacy and why does it matter?” takes an in-depth look at what media and literacy are as separate entities and in combination. I am passionate about literacy through and through. I believe that it is the gateway for student success and achieving lifelong goals. This area of strength has driven me to become passionate in my teaching practice. As I read through the articles and as I unwrap this class information, I am reminded that literacy is a gateway into our “modern digital age” as stated in “A Reminder That ‘Fake News’ Is An Information Literacy Problem-Not A Technology Problem.” Up until now, I haven’t really connected these aspects to literacy. For starters, I implemented technology in a limited way and experimented with some projects with colleagues. But I can’t say this is an area I was confident in. This quote really struck me, “Children are taught to regurgitate what others tell them and to rely on a digital assistant to curate the world rather than learn how to navigate the information landscape on their own.” It is evident that students need to be given opportunities to explore their learning with a critical lens. This lens can create creative opportunities and develop their skills in the media world.

The article, “What is media literacy and why does it matter?” defines media and literacy in a simple way.

“Media is any communication outlet used to distribute information, entertainment and data.”

“Literacy – is the ability to identify, interpret, understand and communicate.”

When I think of literacy in the primary grades, I naturally think of word walls, writing and reading continuums, idea books, and engagement activities that incorporate these literacy modalities. I dabbled in the past with green screens and connected it to writing for Grade 3 students. I worked alongside Aaron Warner on this project and student engagement was definitely a driving force. We saw success, students engaged and reluctant learners attempting to write and engage in oral sharing time. Moving forward I realize the importance to shift my perspective and continue to build my knowledge in this area. Developing effective literacy lessons and skills must be grounded in quality education. The following article breaks down 4 effective components. The article, Characteristics of Effective Digital Literacy Program breaks down Digital Literacy into 5 simple parts for educators to follow:


Communication and social connection


Storage and Retreieval


As a mother, teaching my daughter her letter sounds seems to be a focus, along with numbers, subitizing, and being a kind friend. As I teach some beginning lessons on digital citizenship I am realizing that this is equally important for my daughter. Media literacy is increasing ever more and at times I wonder if the education system is equipping the students fast enough. I would say I was a strong passionate teacher, although digital literacy wasn’t at the top of my priority list. However, being a reflective educator is vital in our own development as educators.

I was really drawn to the information from Fighting ‘Fake News’ In The Classroom. It is evident the amount of information and misinformation we are exposed to is growing at a rapid pace. This article has valuable tips I am going to share with my students as this current information should be discussed. I am going to be teaching some middle year lessons on Thursday and Friday and plan to discuss this topic with the students. Here are some guiding questions to initiate our conversation:

  1. When you hear the term Digital Literacy, what do you think of?
  2. Where do you get your news from?
  3. Have you read a news paper before?
  4. Do you have news apps on your phone?
  5. Have you heard of fake news before?

Fighting ‘Fake News’ In the Classroom shares 5 journalistic standards questions that will be great to share with the grade 7/8’s. It is evident the need to encourage critical thinkers in our students. Students need opportunities to explore information and become literate in navigating information. This breakdown will enhance the student’s literacy skills and provide a framework for students to learn from.

Below is the breakdown from Fighting Fake News in the Classroom :

Common Sense Education

Common Sense Education offers these visually friendly posters to help engage students and teach them to process the information they are reading. Not only are they a great starting point for students, but they are effective tools for them to refer to.

Thanks for checking in on my latest blog. Take care!

Major Project – Sharing Knowledge Through Connections

  • Monday, March 14th -Friday, March 18th
  • Action: Willie Ermine guest presentation – ” Interconnectdness – wahkotowin”
  • Storytelling through oral language is a beautiful way for people to connect and engage in Indigenous Worldview. 
  • All students will share in Willie Ermine’s knowledge and reflect on their thoughts and feelings following the presentaiton.
  • Primary – Talking Circle – voice recording
  • Middle Years- Mentimeter
  • Grade 7/8- WeVideo Reflection
  • Staff- Mentimeter