Posts tagged community
8th grade students have begun their final rotations this year, meaning 14 soon-to-be graduates have cycled up to the tech lab for Community Class. Students already had a strong understanding of the definitions and complexity of community, having recently spent a week studying the subject with a variety of teachers and team-based activities.
Past groups have explored community from different angles: 1st term focused on community service and documenting our neighborhood, 2nd term surveyed the student population and shared findings of digital identity with the parent community. This term, the group is planning on creating a website for future Billings students that documents all of the trips students take over the course of 3 years.
This website will be a team effort and will include trip overviews, maps, photos, do/don’t lists, gear lists, how-to videos and more. Stay tuned as our website takes shape!
The new group of 8th graders enrolled in Community Class have turned their attention to digital identity in preparation for a January 20th presentation to parents.
The Parent Education committee has requested an evening to discuss “what exactly do students know about social networking and tech usage in general.” The 8th grade sees this as an opportunity to educate parents about screen-time, gaming and social networks and to teach parents what kind of questions to ask.
The class has split into 3 groups:
- Parent/Teacher survey about screen-time and online habits, both for the parent and for their children
- Student survey about digital device interaction (texting, accessing media, gaming, etc)
- An online resource website for parents with links to studies, news stories and FAQ around digital identity.
Results will be posted once data gathering is complete!
One 8th grade class is photographically documenting the meaning of the word “community.” After an introduction to some well known photographers, students used our new interactive white board to sort thumbnail images into a Venn diagram (shown below). We differentiated between artists that convey their theme purely through subject and composition v. those that use treatments after shooting to express themes.
Students then took to the streets to capture the Green Lake community. Once back in the lab, most chose to use a Hockney-esque treatment to convey their theme.
Billings recognizes that everyone benefits when our entire community is involved in education. That said, we are looking at ways to share recommended readings with families. We also understand that yet another printed list from the school can get lost in the shuffle. Here is an attempt to provide a visually appealing book list using Amazon’s Listmania! service:
written by Peter O.
Online identities are a way of sharing real or fake information about your self to a website like MySpace. An online identity is a perfect way of creating a whole new life because you choose what you want people to know and what you don’t want them to. Sharing a video of your self is a type of online identity because you are letting people know what you look like and might be telling them about your personal life. It’s also a way of them seeing what kind of person you might be depending on how you are acting in the video and what you are saying.
The internet allows people to ask for help but unfortunately it doesn’t work the best which can result in deaths or other tragic events occurring. In the following two stories you will hear about how the people in them used the internet to share information about them selves with other people.
Columbine shooting was committed by two high school students Klebold and Harris they were both in their senior year. Harris had a record of minor offense for position of small explosives and threatening messages to certain people. They both had posted blogs and videos of their actions leading up to the shooting. Although Harris had also posted a hit list of the people he intended to kill no one took it seriously and thought it was real. Both Klebold and Harris attended therapy and anger management classes on the courts demand.
After the shooting accrued several things were indentified to the deaths of the students. Both shooters had specific people they had targeted to kill. They shot a lot of the jocks and popular kids, probably because they had bullied Harris and Klebold earlier on in the school year. Harris also killed several kids who strongly believed in god and were very religious. These people who had a strong belief in god who were killed were all girls. There were several warning signs that could have prevented this from happening if both friends and family of the 2 boys had paid close attention to them. Including the fact that Harris and Klebold had several videos across the internet talking about what they were planning on doing and when. They had set the date of the shooting to accrue on Adolf Hitler’s birthday April 20th due to the fact the earlier date was delayed because they had problems making their bombs.
Lots of schools were worried about this happening again do to the fact they had a lot of Goth and Emo students who had a troubling pass. So several schools installed a no bullying policy and made kids who had troubles see a therapist or psychiatrist for help.
Another resent tragedy was the Finnish High School shooting which occurred on November 7 2007 when high school student Pekka Eric Auvinen at the age of 18 brought a hand gun to school and killed 9 people. Both this incident and the columbine shooting involve the use of video messages and blogs. In this case Eric had posted a video of himself on YouTube describing how much he admired the columbine shooting. He included several disturbing thoughts saying that he was planning on doing a copy cat of the columbine shooting at his own high school. A You Tube user saw this and warned the police of what was going on in hope they would check it out. The police did not check it out probably because they thought it was a joke and didn’t want to believe that it was real. Eric probably was trying to ask for some ones help in his video but it didn’t work.
Online identities can be a good thing if you pay attention to the message it is showing other people. While they are not the best way to get some ones help because they might not realizes that you really are going through a hard time and might take it as a joke. So this means that the police should take these messages shown in videos more seriously because so far they have resulted in lots of deaths and injuries. This has huge impact on the community around them and the families of the victims and gunmen too. I have changed my mind on how much information I am willing to share with websites and other people online now.
These are the sites where I got my information from:
Richard Kassissieh blogged last week about a cyberbullying incident at the Catlin-Gabel school in Portland. What technology did they use to stop the bully? A simple conversation between students, parents and the school.
From the story:
The student told her parents. The parents contacted her teacher. The teacher told IT. IT told the division head and together met with the mother. The division head told her faculty. One faculty member witnessed a suspicious activity, which led to the offender.
This story illustrates a few important points:
- There is no software out there that is a substitution for an open relationship between parents and students.
- It takes a community to create and maintain a safe environment for learning and growth.
- Technology is not good or bad – it’s how we use it that has an impact our world.
Last week, when multiple fires converged on San Diego, it was initially hard to find reliable and consistent status updates. News websites were slow to update – due to either server outages, electricity shortages or staffing issues at the local media organizations.
Tired of surfing around to the same sites repeatedly throughout the day, I tested Google’s mashup beta to gather data from Google’s news feed, San Diego’s KPBS map data and Twitter feed, news updates from a San Diego blogger and a list of useful links into a single webpage.
The page is a simple one and has display issues in Safari 2, but was a useful exercise in creating meaningful information from disparate data feeds and the project got a positive response from the mashup community.