• Digital Life 101

    What is the place of digital media in our lives?

    Students are introduced to the 24/7, social nature of digital media and technologies, and gain basic vocabulary and knowledge for discussing the media landscape. Students watch the video “Digital Life 101,” which shows the 24/7, social nature of digital media — a change from the media consumption culture of the past. They then make similes about their digital lives and learn that because media connect us in more social and interactive ways than ever before, it is important to carry out online relationships responsibly. This lesson also serves as an assessment baseline for teachers to gain a better understanding of their students’ familiarity with digital media and vocabulary associated with digital life.

    Students will be able to ...

    • learn about the 24/7, social nature of digital media.
    • explore their digital lives.
    • learn that it is important to act responsibly when carrying out relationships over digital media.


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  • Strategic Searching

    What steps can help you find what you're looking for when you search online?

    Students learn that to conduct effective and efficient online searches, they must use a variety of searching strategies rather than relying on a single source. Students learn a five-step method for planning and carrying out an online search. Students then apply what they have learned to a scenario in which they pretend they are employees in a workplace, searching for information for their job.

    Students will be able to ...

    • understand the importance of using a variety of search strategies.
    • master new strategies for effective and efficient online searches.
    • learn to create and execute a five-step plan for conducting an online search
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  • Scams and Schemes

    What is identity theft, and how can protect yourself from it?

    Students learn strategies for guarding against identity theft and scams that try to access their private information online. Students learn what identity theft is, what kinds of information identity thieves want, and what can be done with that information. Students then analyze phony emails and identify tricks that identity thieves use online. Finally, they create a phishing email that includes the features that they have learned about, and see if classmates can identify the scams.

    Students will be able to ...

    • understand what identity theft is and why it is important to guard against it.
    • learn to recognize strategies that scam artists use to access private information.
    • learn how to guard against phishing and identity theft.
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  • Cyberbullying: Be Upstanding

    How do you judge the intentions and impact of people's words and actions online?

    Students learn about the difference between being a passive bystander versus a brave upstander in cyberbullying situations. Students reflect on what it means to be brave and to stand up for others. They fill out the Why Care? Student Handout, create a diagram of the players involved, and generate ideas about how bystanders can become upstanders. They then identify concrete solutions for dealing with cyberbullying situations.

    Students will be able to ...

    • reflect on what it means to be brave and stand up for others offline and online.
    • learn to show empathy for those who have been cyberbullied.
    • generate multiple solutions for helping others when cyberbullying occurs.
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  • A Creator's Rights

    What rights do you have as a creator?

    Students are introduced to copyright, fair use, and the rights they have as creators. Students first watch a video of young writer who talks about posting and protecting her original work online. Students then learn key vocabulary terms that will help them conceptualize issues surrounding creative work and copyright. Finally, students explore the copyright history of the “Happy Birthday” song and create an original happy birthday song of their own.

    Students will be able to ...

    • understand that copyright is a legal system that protects their rights to creative work.
    • compare different ways people license their copyrighted work.
    • create an original song, perform it in front of the class, and reflect on their copyright for the song.


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