In this post I am applying Dr. Mike Ribble’s 9 Elements of Digital Citizenship to my personal application of TikTok and Flipgrid in the classroom. To keep things organized for my final project I’m going to investigate the themes I feel most relatable to each platform separately. Even though they are both video based platforms, I think there are different applications, audiences, and considerations that are unique to each platform which will affect my final project for EC&I 832.
Element 3: Digital Etiquette
When copying someone’s content, it is expected that you tag the original creator when replicating. There is a history of Black creator content being replicated by white creators without crediting the original poster. While scrolling TikTok there are many fantastic lesson ideas and resources that teachers have created videos for. While I am still finding my own style, I will need to be cognizant of where I am getting my inspiration from and making sure I credit those creators using appropriate “netiquette”.
Educating Self and Others
Element 4: Digital Literacy
Something I feel can be overlooked in education is the purpose of the technology. We need to be explicit about what platform we are creating and sharing content on. For TikTok, I think it is a great format to share resources, strategies, and teaching comedy. It would be important to communicate the importance of voiceovers, selecting appropriate sounds, and captions as each communicating meaning and intent. The way I’ve been approaching sound selection is by finding a sound and exploring TikToks that use that sound to make sure I am using it appropriately. This has been working, although I haven’t mastered the video and sound synch yet. I can see the potential to teaching students the importance of author’s craft in multimedia literacies.
Element 5: Communication
Author’s craft definitely applies to Dr. Ribble’s fifth element, Communication, which is using the right technology to communicate, for what purpose and to whom. I think this is the real importance of teaching students how to use authors craft to boost engagement on a platform (hey, influencing is a real profession!). This applies to many Saskatchewan Curriculum outcomes such as CR3.2, CC3.3 CR5.2, and so many more! Teachers need to realize that to assess these outcomes it doesn’t have to be a written text, there are professions where sound and art are their primary focus in graphic design, advertising, video game production, T.V., the list goes on. I have dabbled in creating content for entertainment, resources, and a unit introduction, but I still haven’t decided on a “brand identity” for my account.
Element 9: Health and Wellness
This is probably the biggest concern I had for myself when downloading TikTok, just how much time was I going to spend on TikTok mindlessly scrolling? TBH, it has increased my phone time, although that is part of this project so I really want to look at how it may affect my mental health. It is easy for teachers to compare these “learning snapshots” that TikTok offers, the cute classroom décor, the engaging lesson plans and feel like a complete failure. It is important to remind yourself and others that this is a highlight reel, since we control what we post we are going to put ourselves in the best light we can. I appreciate that in TikTok’s settings there is a “Digital Wellbeing” category where you can set time management and restricted content.
I haven’t engaged with the platform enough to understand my own boundaries with TikTok, so these settings are currently off for my profile. I have noticed that because I haven’t given much personal information to TikTok yet, the algorithm for my “For You” page is not yet tailored to my interests and can often frustrate me with TikTok’s initial algorithm. I’m interested to see how this changes as I engage further with the platform with likes and follows.
Element 1: Law
The first thing I will need to do in my division for Flipgrid is look at students’ Media Release forms. While this form doesn’t apply to limited access platforms such as Flipgrid, it is still important to model respect for privacy and offer choices such as audio recordings or filters to build a community of trust within your school families. In this I believe it is important to be transparent with parents about the access to student work, moderation of comments, and their right to deny use. While I don’t want to disadvantage students by omitting technology or being afraid of it, there is a different comfort level among families that needs to be respected. Teachers and families are a team, not opponents.
Element 3: Digital Etiqutte
The next step to implementing Flipgrid in the classroom will be to determine digital etiquette when interacting with other’s posts. This includes likes, reactions, and comments. It will be important to teach students that what we write is stored, and has serious effects. In the day of screenshots, it is also important to have a conversation of respecting other’s privacy by not distributing or editing images of other people without their consent. This also ties to the next element I’d like to address.
Element 8: Rights and Responsibilities
This element includes modelling our responsibility to report other’s misuse of a platform and maintaining digital equipment (including school provided resources). I’d like to have students create their responsibility list as a class and agree to these conditions, as well as the consequences of not following these conditions. This puts ownership to them in creating a safe digital community. I’d like to scaffold and practice this by first having students upload their videos with a moderated topic, then progressing towards unmoderated topics. This will allow me to have one-on-one conversations with students who are not complying with these responsibilities.
I’m looking forward to testing and comparing these two video platforms. Now, I’m off to make more embarrassing TikToks!