The following short account of "Cyber Civics: Level 1" was written by a wonderful young digital citizen named William. This is his self-drawn selfie (made for the lesson "My Self; My Selfie") along with the bio that another classmate wrote for him (for the lesson "You, In Six Words"). William's classmate described him this way: Very Quiet, But Full of Words." We thought that was a perfect, and appropriate, bio! Enjoy...
What is Cyber Civics? It's a class that we incorporate at Journey School. In this class we learn the difference between digital drama and cyberbullying. We learn how to present ourselves online and we learn how to be upstanders and help change peoples lives for the better and other stuff too.
Now you may be asking what is digital drama or what is the difference between digital drama and cyberbullying? Digital drama is really just drama that happens online, it's hurtful but not meant to be hurtful. It's an accident that somebody got hurt. Here's an example: There's a birthday party and all the boys get invited, all except a few kids that no one likes. At the party
the people take pictures and post them and then the kids who didn't go to the B-day party see them and start crying... That is digital drama. Cyberbullying is repetitive, harmful, and like digital drama, will be online forever.
We also learned to follow the rules on social media sites, like to wait to get an account when you're thirteen and to use common sense (like not to cyberbully and not to post bad pictures). We also learned that our profile pictures tell a lot about ourselves, like our gender, how we prefer to dress, what we look like, and what we do during our pastimes (roughly) like if you workout or not. We also learned it is better to have a social media account than not to have one. If you don't have one then people assume you have something to hide!
We also learned how to be an upstander. You can be an upstander by watching and seeing when somebody is being cyberbullied and then tell the person to stop bullying the other, you can do something nice for the target, or you can talk to a trusted adult.
We also did other stuff in Cyber Civics too, such as creating an app. This was probably my favorite thing we did in this class. The assignment said to make an app that was nice and friendly and could have a positive affect on the world. In class I made an app that was focused on sports. The app would find somebody near you (let's take tennis as an example) that was around your skill level in points and would pair you up and set up a tennis match. This app would be a bit like a social media site because you can talk and arrange when you have time and get XP points for when you congratulate or send a "good game" text to the person you played. The more you win the more points you would get, the more you lost, the more you would lose points. With more points you would move up into a league with better players.
Well that's it. Next year I will have Cyber Civics again, and we'll learn how to do research online and stuff like that!