Julie walton integrating the internet safely and ethically project
Integrating the Internet Safely and Ethically Project
November 17, 2013
I guess it is fair to say that I am an Internet-a-holic, if that’s a word!
use the Internet.
I love to use Facebook to catch up with old friends and classmates
and see pictures of their families.
I love to
I like to see what is going on in the lives of others
I use email on a daily basis.
I have a personal email account and one at
I communicate with others using email daily.
I do not use chat rooms or
discussion boards often, although I like the Pinterest website and how it is designed.
This time of year I do a lot of online shopping for Christmas.
made it so easy to buy online and have it delivered right to your front door.
It is very
convenient, and we live in a society that is all about convenience.
Google is probably my favorite website.
I use it daily to locate information
from lesson plans, homework help for my children, ideas for crafts, home repair- you
name it, and I can find it on Google!
As I research this information and reflect on my practices of using the Internet, I
have become surprisingly aware that I divulge too much information online.
am making an online purchase, I try to online use sites that take Paypal for payment.
But many times, depending on how much I want the item or how inexpensive it is, I will
buy it without the secure lock checkout sign at the bottom.
When I use Facebook, I have set my account so that only my friends can view my
posts and pictures.
However, I am aware that there are ways around this.
become so paranoid from all the news stories that I have heard recently about stalkers
preying on children, that I have just about banned myself from putting any pictures on
As a teacher, it is my responsibility to make sure that I know what students
are doing on the Internet and making sure that I set guidelines for computer use (Mills,
Teaching students about Internet safety has to be one of my first priorities.
I must admit, after reading this week’s information, that I have been guilty of
breaking the copyright rules.
Many times, before reading these pages, have I used
some clip art or cute pictures from the web for presentations or newsletters I have
I, like many students, have assumed that if it is on the Internet that it there
for my free use.
But after reading the Mills text, I am aware that I must model integrity
for my students (Mills, p. 18).
This must be consistent in my daily activities such as
photocopying and taking graphics off the Internet.
Mills expresses the need for
teachers to use different strategies to help students understand and prevent plagiarism
such as making assignments clear and specific and using rubrics for assignments.
(Mills, p. 18).
I work in the Hardeman County School System. We have a district-wide
acceptable use policy that is sent home at the beginning of the school year for parents
and students to discuss and sign.
Any students who do not return it, or whose parents
check no to Internet use, will not be allowed to use the school’s computers.
student has a file in which this important document is kept.
Our policy begins with the statement that “computer use is a privilege, not a
right.” Many of us forget that.
The policy then goes on to describe in detail what is
“acceptable use” and “prohibited use.” Acceptable use explains that students may surf
the net and play games under the supervision of a teacher.
Prohibited use forbids
personal software from being brought to school and copied on school computers.
Students may not cause harm to the computers or use food or drink around them.
Computers are not to be used to harass or bully others. Violation of copyright laws is
Students are prohibited to give their personal information online.
Accessing social networking sites blocked by filtering software is prohibited.
including the link to our acceptable use policy below from one of our schools’
It is on page 11.
Our county strives to make sure that each student’s personal information is kept
Parents must sign a release at the beginning of the year giving the school
consent to take and publish pictures of their child, use their child in any reading videos,
or to publish their child’s name.
We use filtering software that blocks sites that are
deemed inappropriate for children.
Our school has adopted the Olweus Bullying
Prevention Program, and we devote much time to talk to our students about different
types of bullying, including cyberbullying.
Our students are very aware of bullying and
now know how to identify it and the steps to take to prevent it.
As I reflect on our district acceptable use policy, I feel that it is very
comprehensive and comparable to others in the state.
However, after reading the
Mills text, I realized that there are ways that we could make the policy better.
have filtering software on our computers, but we need programs that prevent students
from giving out personal information online.
I also like the idea from
Mills about creating a classroom email address so that teachers and parents can
monitor student discussions in online chats.
Although I teach lessons on plagiarism
and copyright, I realize that students need a constant reminder throughout the year of
the AUP rules. Mills suggested making a classroom poster reminding students of the
I think this is a great idea, and one I am planning on using.
I currently teach 1st grade, and my first graders are not as Internet savvy as most
of the older students in our school.
My students are very innocent and naive, so I try
to express to them that they cannot believe everything they read online. Although
they are young, I understand the importance of teaching them early on about copyright
infringement and using the Internet safely and wisely.
At the beginning of the year I go
over the AUP with my students and make sure they know what is expected of them.
have the students take the AUP home and go over it with their parents and have them
and their parents sign it.
We have a short lesson in class on what is “acceptable use”
and “unacceptable use.” The computer teacher also goes over this with students.
Most of the lessons I find on copyright are over my kids’ heads, so I have to water it
down some and adapt it for my 1st graders.
The following websites are great resources
for teaching students about copyright:
Even though my students are young, they are not too immature to be taught
how to distinguish between Internet sites that are reliable and those who are not. I
like to approach this topic early on in the year.
I found a great website, and worked
together with our librarian to teach my students four lessons over the course of three
I needed a lot of help from my librarian to adapt the information for my
I feel that this is a process that is a school-wide effort, and begins with the
early grade teachers.
The following website even lists some kid friendly sites that are
As I said earlier, my students are very young and naïve when it comes to the
Internet. They take what they see at face value.
I have not had any problems with
my students violating the copyright laws or with plagiarism, mostly because the work
they do is supervised. They have not completed major research projects yet in which
they have to cite information.
However, I am now more aware, after reading this
week’s texts, of the importance of teaching students early on about academic honesty.
The reality is that many parents are not aware of copyright infringement and plagiarism.
I think the best way to get this message across to our students is to educate the parents
I loved the idea from the post about having a parent night to inform parents
about cyber safety issues (Mirtschin, 2008).
I think the earlier in the year, the better
After reading all the texts this week, I am painfully aware that I need to do more
to protect myself personally online.
information for its credibility.
students about Internet safety.
I also need to take more time to evaluate
As a teacher, I
am responsible for teaching my
Several ideas from our texts this week stuck out in my
I would like to create an AUP poster stating all the rules and leave it up in my
classroom all year (Mills, 2006).
This would serve as a constant reminder for my
students of what is expected of them.
I also like the idea of purchasing some type of
filtering software that limits personal information students are allowed to put on the
web (Mills, 2006).
Although most of my students do not participate in online chats, I
think it would be a great idea to have a classroom email so that parents and I could
monitor any students discussions online. I would like to coordinate, along with our
a Parent Technology Night in which we educate parents about the
importance of Internet safety and copyright laws (Mirtschin, 2008).
benefit our students as well.
I think this would
Bunyi, A. (2010, November 5). Identifying Reliable Sources and Citing Them.
November 14, 2013, from http://www.scholastic.com/teachers/topteaching/2010/11/reliable-sources-and-citations
Cyber Bee. (2013). Retrieved November 13, 2013, from
Electric Frontier Foundation. (2013). Retrieved November 13, 2013, from
Hardeman County Schools. Retrieved November 14, 2013, from
Mills, S. (2006). Using the Internet for Active Teaching and Learning.
River, NJ: Pearson.
Mirtschin, A. (2008, March 27). Keeping Students Cybersafe. Retrieved November
2013, from http://murcha.wordpress.com/2008/03/27/keeping-studentscybersafe/
The Copyright Society of the USA.
Retrieved from November 13, 2013 from