This is a fun and easy lesson I did with 4th-6th graders. I used a new fishing tackle box, and gathered materials to place in it that represented different aspects of responsible, safe digital citizenship. I gave students the opportunity to guess what each item might represent first, before I revealed the answer, and it resulted in enthusiastic participation. The stories students added to the discussion were excellent. For example, when we discussed not sharing anything electronically that grandma would be horrified by, one student contributed that her 13-year old brother started a group text with his buddies and accidentally included his grandma, who got a hilarious eye-full. The point was made for me!
Padlock – Instead of a password, think about using a passphrase. A common 8-character password with an uppercase, a lower case, a number and a symbol character would take a computer only a few minutes to hack.
Bad passwords: password, passwerd, 1234, onetwothreefour
Better password: OPELibraryis110%AWESOME!
A good password is: easy to remember, hard to guess, unlikely to be in the dictionary.
Toothbrush – Passwords and toothbrushes are similar in that you NEVER want to share them (Exception: I recommended sharing passwords with parents).
Boxers (new!) – Another password comparison:
Don’t share with friends
Don’t leave them laying around
The longer the better
Change them regularly
Permanent Marker – Everything that is put online is permanent, even if you hit the delete button after posting. Even when using an account you think is anonymous, it’s not that difficult for someone to figure out who you are.
Magnifying Glass – Colleges and future employers will be looking at applicants’ social media activity and basing decisions on what they see.
Small bar of soap – Remember to keep it clean.
Picture of grandma – Don’t post anything you wouldn’t be happy for her to see.
Strainer/Coffee Filter – Learn to filter information found online, to determine reliability and appropriateness.
Toothpaste – Imagine the information that you are putting online is like the toothpaste coming out of the tube. Once it is out, it is almost impossible to get it all back in the tube.
Have fun with this lesson, and if you are local and want to borrow my kit, rather than assemble a new one, just ask.
Thank you to http://www.craigbadura.com/2013/08/the-new-and-improved-digital.html?spref=tw&m=1 for the inspiration to do this lesson. Be sure to check his website to see many more ideas for items to include.