Appropriate Language and Life Skills 2014 – ‘Walking the Talk?’

One week on from the launch [October 2014], email has raised it’s head as our first teaching priority after half term. I find each rollout interesting in how student usage evolves year by year.

It’s important to allow a honeymoon period post launch, where students explore (ours coincides with half term holiday) although crucial that they have had a lot of strategic input pre-launch on understanding responsible use, communicating in an appropriate manner and ‘right use, right time, right place’?

As is our experience of each rollout so far, amongst the excitement and anticipation of a 1:1 device there is a talking the talk vs walking the talk disparity as their independence grows. Students arriving in @2014 Y6 are more aware of social media, Instagram, Pinterest, messaging, YouTube Channels etc than the previous years.
At 11, they have the know-how, but not the bigger picture of digital identity and portrayal of self online.
Our duty of care remains constant, and needs a sturdy infrastructure of open dialogue, review and reflection by the technology team, senior leaders, key teachers and students alike.

Students have a variety of experience in Y5 and at start of Y6 using Edmodo as a communication forum, demonstrate a change in nature of communicative behavior with 1:1 devices.

I’ve written a bit before on the shift from digital ‘citizenship’ to all round citizenship, and @2104 I feel this is moving to the next stage that could be categorized as ‘life skills’, even for the Under 11s.
MindShift via 21CL on ‘Essential Insights About Mobile Learning’ mentioned ‘It’s no longer something you implement, it’s evolving, and it’s unique in each location’.
Well written, and I’d add ‘…unique for each individual learner’

I’m on a ferry between Duinkerk and Dover, as it’s half term and packed with French and Dutch school parties, behaving at less than their best. I wonder what a survey of their digital best would look like right now. As I scan the lounge area around me, more than half of the people, families, groups, solo travelers are sitting, transfixed by their devices (and blissfully unaware of the unflattering chin down ‘watch device face’).
The school parties on deck we’re a chattering wave of selfie-tastic clicks shouting “Jongens – even selfien!”
(As we know, To Selfie has become a multilingual verb. The Netherlands version comes with a zero volume control feature).

Back inside I grabbed an espresso and no sooner had I sat down, a timely advert from Barclays Bank on the news screen caught my ear.

The business world is reflecting on appropriate behavior for its future workforce. Congratulations Barclays – great pitch and investment in helping recognize the difference between social and professional digital language and presentation.
The video on ‘Lifeskills…Appropriate Language’ reads something like this:
“Dear Employer, your company is totes amAzeballs …LOL…laterZ…smiley face…kiss kiss kiss”.
The speaker then explains > ‘You’re asking them for a job – not adding them as a friend. Be respectful and be yourself, but not yourself on a Saturday night.”

Valid comment for us all.

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