January 21

Let’s Think About Our Digital Footprints

A New Nearpod Lesson

I have created a new Nearpod lesson that can be used anywhere from grade 4 to grade 8 in which we will learn about Digital Footprints.  Digital Footprints are the tracks you leave all over the internet every time you go online.  Any time you visit a website, leave a comment, post a picture, create a post on social media, post a video on youtube, participate in online chats, etc… you are leaving behind a digital footprint.  It is extremely important to be aware of this because these footprints are permanent and searchable.  In this Nearpod lesson you will participate in polls, quizzes, and a game of ‘Time to Climb’ to learn about this topic.

If you aren’t a Nearpod user, here is more on the topic of Digital Footprints;

Let’s watch this little video about Digital Footprints created by Common Sense Education.

It may seem impossible to believe but 15 years from now a future employer may be Googling your name and finding the mean comments you left all over YouTube, or the crazy photos you posted on social media, and thinking you may not be the best person to hire for a job!  More importantly for today though, the things you are posting now will find their way back to parents and teachers.  Here are some tips from safesitter.org to making sure that the tracks we leave online are the good kind!

So let’s think about some places online we need to be extra careful…

Game Chats

  • Never share private information like your address, full name, school, phone number, or email in a game chat.
  • Don’t make rude or mean comments in a game chat.  Not only will it get you banned from the game, it will be permanently logged.

YouTube, TikTok, and Social Media Comments

  • The comments you post online should be supportive and kind.  Hurtful comments can never be erased, even if you delete the post.  It is very easy for others to screenshot and share the things you’ve posted.

The Sites You Visit

  • Make sure you are visiting sites that are appropriate and approved by parents and teachers.  Every site you visit shows up in your Search History and can be seen by parents and school administrators.

Your Messenger Chats

  • Most parent-approved texting apps like Messenger Kids allow parents to see every chat.  Other chat apps allow friends and family to screenshot and save messages.  So be aware of the kinds of photos and messages you are texting with others.  What you say today may be online forever.

Your Social Media and Blog Posts

  • Make sure that all of the videos, photos and posts you put online are ones you’d be happy to share forevermore, because that is how long they will be searchable online!
  • Never post pictures of your friends without their permission.
  • Make sure you have parental permission to be posting certain kinds of posts on the internet.

May 22

What is a Digital Footprint?

Today students were introduced to the concept of a Digital Footprint.  We used the example of tracks left by animals and how we can use our own deductive capabilities to infer quite a lot about an animal based on its tracks.

The same is true for us when we go online.  The sites we visit, the comments we post, the videos we upload, the games we play, all of those things create a digital footprint that can tell people about us and will exist online for a very long time.  We tied this in to the concept of responsibilities and discussed what our responsibilities are to ourselves and to others online.

Our grade 3 and 4 students came up with some of the following ideas;

Our students are getting the foundation they need to navigate the sometimes scary world of the internet in a safe and responsible way.