August 15, 2012

Google Offers An Online Digital Citizen Curriculum via YouTube

I recently discovered a Google/YouTube collaboration for teaching digital citizenship practices. The curriculum is for teachers to use to teach students what digital citizenship means and how it impacts their online and offline lives.

The interactive curriculum is on YouTube. There was a time in the early days of the Internet when I would hear that teachers felt an obligation to educate students on how to be safe, engaged and confident model "Netizens." It has been awhile since I heard that term used, and I'm not sure if this is still a topic that is taught. Perhaps, we are assuming that students are born into Net citizenship.

This initiative is aimed at students aged 13 to 17, but elements could certainly be used with older and younger students with some adaptations. For example, the lesson on Copyright, which includes a Teacher's Guide and Slides, could be used with an introductory college group.

Google is using their own YouTube community as the content for the lessons provided. They cover YouTube’s policies, how to report content, how to protect their own privacy, and how to be responsible YouTube community members. Teachers would hopefully lead students to see the wider implications of being part of an online community and how this applies to places like Facebook.

Each lesson comes with guidelines for teachers and ready-made slides for presentation. There’s also a YouTube Curriculum channel where videos related to the project will be posted.

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