Dialogue Starters

The fortune teller I describe in this post was my take on a brochure that I needed to design to go along with my action research presentation. It was a bit of a stretch, but I wanted to create something that got more than a polite glance and would be forgotten. 

The fortune teller purposely juxtaposes the often parallelizing complexity of technology with the comfortable simplicity of a game played during school days gone by.  It is designed to engage users in a dialogue about learning with technology and what that means in terms of digital awareness and responsibilities. The starting points are interact, learn, create and share; four verbs that define the actions students take as they access and process information online.

When you manipulate the fortune teller it will bring you to either one of two groups of information. The first set is four general digital responsibilities and the second set lists examples relating to those responsibilities. Depending on your choice of switches you will find one of these sets:

1. Digital Security -or- Protect your passwords & information, etiquette
2. Digital Literacy -or- Locate info, evaluate, organize & apply
3. Digital Law -or- Original works, copyright, remix, citing sources
4. Digital Footprint -or- Collaborative documents, websites, blogs, wikis

Under each of the four flaps, you will find a Discussion Starter question on one side and a common concern about the appropriate use of technology that concludes with a step toward responsibly addressing the problem on the other.  The Discussion Starters come from the International Society for Technology in Education (ISTE) National Educational Technology Standards for Students (NETS-S) .  The fifth NETS for Students focuses on Digital Citizenship.

1a. In what ways does your student exhibit a positive attitude toward using technology that supports learning?
1b. Compare face-to-face and digital interactions. Technology use can lead to risks, but making informed choices reduces that potential.

2a.  How are you advocating for and practicing safe, legal and responsible use of information and technology?
2b.  Identify sites where students post. Discuss how they use the site settings to protect their private information and stay safe.

3a.  What does it mean to exhibit leadership for digital citizenship?
3b.  A common concern is that technology does make it easier to copy other’s work. There are basic rules to avoid plagiarism.

4a. How important is it that our students demonstrate personal responsibility for lifelong learning?
4b.  Learning is both an individual and social process. Introducing technology into education transformed traditional notions of learning.