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Growing and Learning!

Until this class, I rarely thought about what digital identity encapsulates. Sounds perhaps naive, but now more than ever, I am exploring the digital presence I have placed out into the world. I have been learning how to authentically teach students about being healthy digital citizens.

My decolonization process this past decade has really initiated my unlearning process within my own space and my place here on Earth. To a point, I feel like, in ways, I set aside my digital responsibility as an educator to feel grounded in my process as an educator and my own personal identity. This grounding sensation within my own identity reconnects me to my place within a worldview I began to connect with. This propelled my mission as an educator to continue to learn and unlearn my thinking and advocate for Indigenous education. Teaching Indigenous content should come from a respectful place and a worldview that reflects Indigenous people authentically. This journey has allowed me to develop a breadth of knowledge; while decolonizing my spirit, mind, and space. 

As a mother, educator, and community member living on Treaty Four territory, discovering my identity and unveiling my roots is something I must keep as a central component in my research. Absolon (2011) expresses, “to remember who we are and where we come….,” (p.16). This has become a central grounding for me as I delve into this new learning realm.

My Digital Presence in my past…
  • My digital footprint began when I first logged into MSN a very long time ago. Since then, I have grown a little bit; however, my knowledge is still evolving. I did not ever think back when I played around with MSN that my digital footprint would be on it forever. I knew there were dangers to being online, however, I didn’t understand the tools or how to critically navigate the online world. I just remember there being a ‘fear factor to going online but no education or guidance on how to safely use it.
  • As I deepen my relationship with Twitter, Instagram, and blogs, I remain cautious about entering and logging onto any digital platform. Deepening my understanding of these platforms has allowed me to post more confidently and participate in media literacy in an educated way. I am more aware and critical when thinking of what to post and join in.

Moving Forward…

  • As I mentioned I was fearful back in the day about the digital world; however, I don’t want to instill this fear into my daughter or my students. By learning specifically about digital media and citizenship, I will be skilled and able to engage critically in media literacy education.
  • My digital presence has grown as I learned about Twitter, and I would like to continue this growth. This class has pushed me to read, learn, and post more on this platform.

My Future as an Educator…

  • I implemented the 9 Elements of becoming a Digital Citizen by Dr. Ribble into my lessons.
  • Connecting Indigenous knowledge to people through multimedia.
  • Implementing WeVideo as a tool in the classroom to teach Digital Citizenship.
  • Encouraging students to create their own digital citizenship pledges.
  • Embedding Digital Citizenship and normalizing it throughout my everyday teaching
  • Using Common Sense Media to help educate my students and other teachers.
  • I keep coming back to the article, Digital Citizenship Education in Saskatchewan Schools, as an excellent document that shares a continuum for educators to follow that is cross-curricular in nature and encompasses Dr. Ribbles’ 9 Elements of Digital Citizenship. The continuum identifies the critical areas explicitly for educators to begin working with.

My Future as a Mother…

  • I will continue to educate myself with tools that will equip me to share healthy strategies with my daughter. Common Sense Media offers parents and educators valuable tips to inform those close to us and how to navigate the digital world wisely. I enjoyed the breakdown of information and options as a parent and educator exploring this tool.
  • One thing I have learned to begin building with my daughter is creating new dialogue around the iPad or online activity. Setting healthy boundaries and limits come with normalizing healthy lifestyle choices. Having discussions around digital identity at a young age will help my daughter healthily understand the digital world.
  • Here is a Common Sense Media Pledge that I will show my daughter and primary students.

Connecting Digital Identity to Digital Citizenship…

  • Interrelated
  • Our online identity is connected to being balanced and kind online.
  • Navigating the digital world in a kind and appropriate way.

Throughout the reading, The Digital Identity: What is it and Why is it valuable? Digital identity is “a collection of features and characteristics associated with a uniquely identifiable individual — stored and authenticated in the digital sphere — and used for transactions, interactions, and representations online.” The author shares the term digital sphere, which helps a new learner understand digital literacy’s unlimited options. Keith Metcalfe identifies 4 categories that encapsulate the digital world:

  • Credentials
  • Character
  • User
  • Reputation

Furthering Metcalfe’s notion, one statement that resonates with me is, “The march is on to establish digital identities that fully mirror the real-life identities of individuals.” This statement identifies the vital link between our online identities and human qualities. All qualities affect us as individuals in our personal world, communities, and social context. I love how this definition encompasses the reality we have in shaping the narrative in our lives. We must continue building a bridge between the two worlds and educate our students together in an open environment about digital media’s opportunities.


Published by Kola

I am a response teacher in Regina, Saskatchewan on Treaty 4 Territory.

2 thoughts on “Growing and Learning!

  1. Kola, I like how you broke down your blog post for this week into easy-to-read categories. I also like how you broke down your plan going forward as an educator and as a mother. I sometimes think that I forget that I have to turn off the educator-specific role at home, and have to be just a mom to my little one. It can be so tricky because I see what happens with my kiddos at school and I just want to prepare him for the “big world”, but at the same time, I need to also step back and be in a different role. Keeping an open channel for dialogue is key to having open and honest conversations (although they may be scary or hard at times), it’s definitely worth it! Thanks so much for sharing.


  2. I really like the way you explained digital citizenship with respect to your roles in life… Indeed this course has taught us a lot… For a change, I have become tech-savvy… I came to know about my digital identity and many more things….
    “All qualities affect us as individuals in our personal world, communities, and social context.” I completely agree, undeniably our online presence is interrelated to our offline world….

    Liked by 1 person

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