Major Project Proposal

It has taken me some time to get my major project sorted out.  I’m still not 100% sure about how I will go about gathering information and compiling it, but that’s part of the process, right?

Because the concept of digital citizenship is becoming something that we are educators are starting to realize we should have a hand at addressing with our students, I wanted to start with my own children first.  As an LRT, I don’t have a class of students for which I can develop a curriculum resource to use and implement daily.  Therefore, topic one is not a realistic choice at this time.  As for topic number two, I’ve noticed that a lot of my classmates are tackling this and I feel that I can learn from them on their journey of social media apps instead of exploring it myself.  I’m not comfortable approaching topic three of social activism as I feel it would require a lot more time than what I have available right now.  That leaves with me one option, topic four, a student-designed project.

The idea for my designed project came to me when reading a recent book with my daughters (ages 9 and 11) about Web Tools for Kids (see my last post).  I was learning a lot of things along with them with regards to why we use the internet, safety online, and most recently blogs, captchas, collaborative documents, and copyright.  This got me to thinking that maybe I could learn more about digital identity and citizenship alongside my girls and come up with some fun ways for them to share their knowledge and creatively teach their own peers.  This may also allow us to teach their peers’ parents as well, either directly or indirectly.

Therefore, my project will be:

Through the eyes of a child (my daughters), I will use inquiry research to learn about digital citizenship and share this new knowledge with their peers.

I don’t have a specific outline like most others have posted, but after listening to Mary Beth Hertz describe the topics that she addresses with her students, I have a lot of different directions that I can go and explore.  First off, here is where I will start.

  1.  Research different purposes for why we use the internet and have my daughters identify how and why they use it.
  2. Pre-teach and frequently review technological vocabulary as there is a lot of specific jargon that needs to be understood.
  3. Consistently write down any questions my daughters may have during our discussions and use them to guide our research.
  4. Discover kid-friendly resources online and offline to help engage their interest in this topic.
  5. Develop a list of questions to use with their age alike peers to gather data about their knowledge base on these topics and to help find areas that lack understanding.

If you have any other suggestions or recommendations that would help guide my project as outlined, I welcome it.  I’m looking forward to involving my own kids in this process.  I just hope their initial interest in being involved doesn’t subside.  Time will tell!

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One thought on “Major Project Proposal

  1. Daina,

    I’m in the same boat—I created an outline, but I’m pretty sure I’ve changed it up 3 times already. It has been a process! I appreciate that you are taking an inquiry-based approach and I think it will be such a rewarding experience to learn alongside your daughters! I like the piece about exploring technical terms! It is tough for adults to understand, let alone kids. Having a resource that is geared toward kids would even be helpful for adults.

    Whenever I do inquiry with my own students, I have them develop a list of guiding questions to create a spring board for their research. That may be helpful for you to help guide your inquiry and to give you a starting point at least? Or have your daughters generate a list of guiding questions and compare them with yours? You also mention collecting some data from your daughters’ peers. I think it may also be interesting to collect data from their parents to gain a sense of their knowledge base as well.

    Lots of great ideas! I can’t wait to see where your research takes you!


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