Upon taking this class I have begun to discuss with my students their digital tattoo. I have then added activities in my instruction for them to practice positive ways to leave a digital footprint. I started with a video and then the following challenge: Can you easily find your table partners digital presence? What does their digital footprint reveal about your table partners? Is their digital footprint positive or negative?
I then had them practice many ways to positively create a digital footprint for themselves by allowing them to be public to the class but still private to the world through a padlet, flipgrid, and moodle blog forum activity throughout a unit of study. All of these activities allowed students to have a voice and I noticed that when they knew they were being posted, where their peers could see their responses, the quality of the responses rose. I also heard from many students that are not comfortable in speaking in front of the large group (I teach an interdisciplinary class of 65 students).
This was all in preparation so that I could then have my students create a twitter account and tweet out positively to the world. Their first tweet was in response to an article, video on Meet the Press, and trending tweets on the Ferguson Missouri officer grand jury decision. Students responded to something that resonated with them during the class investigation on this issue through twitter, with my classroom hashtag #hhsfoc or through padlet, (as there was a glitch with twitter while they were trying to post.)
My next step-which leads to the PLN assignment is connecting my students with trending topics on twitter and exposing them to creating their own PLN. Right now we are studying the economics of the Great Depression and I am having my students find what is trending on twitter in the world of economics. I created a twitter challenge for them this past weekend that would allow points for meeting the following guidelines: 1)Create the most retweeted tweet regarding the role of Government in the US economy either past or present; 2) Retweet a tweet regarding the role of Government in the US economy either past or present; 3) Retweet an economic tweet that is farthest away geographically; 4) Tweet or Retweet an economic tweet that relates to that days class lesson; 5) Retweet a trending tweet on economics. I was able to track my students tweets by having them add the #hhsfoc which would then post their tweets to my class twitter account. (For a retweet they had to copy and paste a tweet, add their comment and the hashtag#hhsfoc).
I was able to guide my students to more complex thinking about their tweets by asking them questions directly to their handle. I was pleasantly surprised at how my students were able to quickly respond to my higher level questioning of their initial tweets. It also was a great way to start an economic conversation with a global perspective in class on Monday.