"Public vs. Private – Should Student Work Be Public On the Web?"
I came across this article on Twitter recently. Should students post work publicly online?
I am a firm believer that the answer is yes, so I wanted to see what information this post offered on the topic.
I've captured my favorite part of this article below.
I agree completely with what positive aspects of publishing work that this article mentions. The society our students are growing up in is one where "likes," "retweets," and "followers" determine how successful your post was at reaching others. How does hanging a piece of writing on the wall of a building match the world the students see outside of the classroom?
I am aware that publishing online means that student work can be accessed by others. That is exactly the point. I want my students to create work that is meaningful. I want students to have a chance to share their voice with the world.
I also know that students are posting and sharing online, whether I allow them to do so in my class or not. I think it is important that I prepare my students for this world and give them the tools to contribute in a positive manner. If we shelter our students from ever posting anything publicly, can we really blame them when they don't use the ability appropriately?
The incorporation of technology into the classroom exposes students to different security issues than we may previously had to deal with. The reality of the dangers accessible through the computer are real, but they should not deter teachers from utilizing technology. It is important to protect students and teach them responsible us while working online.
Two important documents for educators to be familiar with are CIPA and COPPA. CIPA is the Children's Internet Proection Act (Guide can be found here), and COPPA is Children's Online Protection Privacy Act. COPPA terms can be found here, and a document on how to comply with COPPA is also published here.
CIPA requires school systems to restrict access to specific content online. The limits often err on the side of caution which means blocked access to useful sites. I believe that moderating access to sites is important, but it is also important to teach responsible use. Instead of removing student access from sites like YouTube, we should instead teach students to be responsible users of such content.
Based in Doha currently, I am a technology-advocating learning junkie.