Hello! Welcome to Teen Learning 2.0.
This tutorial is designed so that you can learn how to use the tools of web 2.0 for your classes or for fun.
You may do it on your own or as a part of a group.
We hope that you will have fun – because these websites are full of creative ideas for you to use. Take time to explore and enjoy all the tools of this new Internet. Read on!
Here is a “teacher moment” for you: A word for you to consider: responsibility. Before you begin this tutorial, you need to know that you are entering the big world of the Internet and “social networking”. This means that you will possibly encounter images and ideas that may be different from those that you are used to. While we have limited the places we’re sending you, you will still be interacting with your fellow students in a way that you may not have done before. Therefore, we expect you to behave respectfully, always be positive and, when asked to critique others ideas, you will do so in a way that promotes learning and is constructive.
This tutorial was first designed for teachers, and it included activities organized into 23 different topics or “things.” You will explore 10 different topics and complete at least one activity for each topic. There are additional activities to explore and experience if time allows.
How to complete this tutorial:
- Each topic takes about a week to complete.
- Each week you will will be introduced to at least one website [or ‘tool’]. You may also get information about an aspect of digital citizenship.
- Next, you have an activity to complete using the website.
- The last, and most important thing you need to do is to post about what you learned on your blog.
Topic 1: Digital Citizenship
Here are some questions for you to think about:
- What is digital citizenship?
- What are the rights and responsibilities of a digital citizen in today’s world?
By exploring new online tools and using them to publish online in this tutorial, you will get to experience many new ways to be creative. You will also have the freedom to interact with friends in new ways and possibly even with people from around the country or the world. With that freedom, comes the responsibility to practice good etiquette as a digital citizen.
Activity 1: To help you explore these topics and try to answer the questions above for yourself or through conversation with your friends and classmates, here are a few short videos for you to watch:
- Privacy: Post to be private and Social Networking
- Protecting Your Reputation online
- Your Digital Footprints: Visit this site and click to play “A Tale of Two Footprints”
Activity 2: To see whether you have a “digital footprint” established already, try going to Google and searching for your name. You may be surprised by what you find. Your digital footprint will stay with you your entire life, so you want whatever people may find about you online to be positive.
After you set up your blog (in Topic 2), you will write a posting about your thoughts about digital citizenship.
Activity 3: Read the Blogging Guidelines for Students from the link at the top of this page.
Topic 2: Blogging
What is a blog? A blog is an online journal. Watch this short video tutorial to get a better idea. (There is a short commerical before it starts.)
Now, you are going to get to make your own blog!
Blogs are very public and you will be sharing your blog address with your teacher, your parents, and your fellow students. All of these people might comment on your blog. You can add comments to your friends’ blogs, and you can encourage your friends and your parents to makes comments on yours. So spread the word among your family and friends.
Activity 1: (Optional) Set up an email account. You may use the email address you already have. If you do not have an email address, you can set up an account with gmail by Google if you are 13 or older. In addition to having an email, it is important to know how to access your email online so you can send and receive email from any computer. If you are under 13, ask your parents if they are willing to set up a family account for your use.
Activity 2: If you have an email account, you can set up your own blog. Edublogs, Google’s Blogger, and Posterous are three options. This site was created using Edublogs. Your librarian or teacher will probably suggest which software to use. Sign on with a name that does not identify you. Depending upon what your librarian/teacher suggests, you can use just your first name or you can invent a screen name. Then, choose a password and complete any additional steps set out on the blog site to complete your blog. If you don’t have an email account, your teacher or librarian will set up a blog for you.
Activity 3: Register your blog. This means that after you create your blog, you will fill out an online form to give your teacher/librarian your email address, blog name, and blog address. He/she will not share your name with anyone else, but will need it for keeping track of your progress. After you have received notice that he/she has received your information and approved your blog, then you can begin with all the fun! Your teacher/librarian will create a “blogroll” – a list of all the blogs for students who are taking the tutorial with you. These are the students you will work with and cheer along the way – that’s the 2.0 way!! Check their blogs regularly and comment on them. Ask them questions about how to do stuff if you’re confused or answer questions for those who might need your help. Cheer them on – have fun! Critique well!
Activity 4: Write your first blog posting. In your posting, include answers to these questions:
- How can you use your blog? What do you think you will enjoy including and writing about?
- Being a good digital citizen:
- What are some topics you can blog about?
- What do you need to be careful to keep private and not include in your blog?
Topic 3: Avatars
What’s an avatar? An avatar is a pictorial representation of you. It can look somewhat like you, but in comic form, or it might be a picture of something you like. In the computer world, you can use an avatar to create an online personality while still protecting your privacy.
Activity 1: Try one or more of these sites to create your own avatar:
Follow the directions on the site to create an avatar, then save the image. On a Mac, you can very easily save an image by holding down the Command, Shift, and 4 keys all at once, then dragging from one corner to the opposite diagonal corner of the image you want to capture. It will now appear as a .png image file on your desktop. On a PC, you can right click, then “Save As” your image from the dream avatar site, but won’t work for the others that don’t create the avatar as a separate image. This blog posting from Edublogger blog about avatars has some tips on how to save and edit your avatar on a PC. Once you have your avatar saved, add it to your blog sidebar. With Edublogs blogs, you do that by uploading it as your blog avatar, then adding an avatar widget to your sidebar. Also add your avatar as your user avatar so that it appears in your comments. The Edublogger blog post can help you with that task also. With Blogger blogs, you add a picture gadget to your sidebar and upload your avatar file to it. Then, also upload your avatar to your profile under My Account.
Activity 2 (optional) More to try: Voki lets you create an animated avatar. To upload this to your blog, copy the html to your computer clipboard, then paste the html into a widget or gadget in you sidebar.
Note: The dream avatar and Voki sites offer the option of creating accounts, but you don’t need to create an account to use them.
Activity 3: Now, write a blog posting about your avatar. Tell which site you used to create it, how you made it, and why you chose the options you did. When you tell which site you used, be sure to make the site name a hyperlink so that your visitors can easily click on it to visit the site. Whenever you refer to another website or page in an online posting, create a hyperlink to make life easy for your readers.
Topic 4: Photos and Images and Giving Credit
Activity 1: Now that you have a blog, you are a publisher. Before you begin searching for and adding images and other items to your blog, you need to learn a little about copyright, public domain, fair use, and Creative Commons, so you make sure that you are only publishing material you are legally entitled to. Watch this fun video to learn about what copyright, public domain, and fair use are. You will notice in it lots of copyrighted images you recognize that are used in a fair use way. (If the previous link is blocked, use this link. You will see a short commercial before the video starts.)
Activity 2: In recent years, a new option has become available to make finding and publishing other people’s material – and sharing what you create yourself – easier: It is called Creative Commons. Watch this video to learn about Creative Commons.
Activity 3: Find Photos & Images
Flickr is a website used primarily for storing and sharing photos. You can use this site to find pictures on any topic. It includes photos taken by individuals as well as from important museums and archives like the Library of Congress. If you open an account, you can also use this site to upload pictures you’ve taken and then you can share them with your family your friends or the whole world.
Flickr includes many Creative Commons images, as well as many that are copyrighted. If you want to publish an image you find at Flickr on your blog, be sure to search for images with Creative Commons licenses. Hint: To find images with Creative Commons licenses, go to the Advanced Search screen, enter a keyword to search, then check.
“ and click Search.
Or, you will probably find it much easier to use the Flickrcc site, which searches just Creative Commons-licensed images on the Flickr site for you.
While there’s a wonderful world of websites out there for you to use both to create – as you have been doing during this tutorial – and to get information. Unfortunately, though, since anyone can publish a website, not all sites are good quality. They may have incorrect or biased information. So, you need to be careful about what sites you select when you are looking for information.
Activity 1: Visit this webpage with “Five Criteria for Evaluating Web Pages” from the Cornell University Library for some questions to think about before you decide to use a site for information. Talk to your librarian about how you can learn more about evaluating websites that you want to consider using for research and information-gathering. Your librarian can also help you with lots of tips on how to find information, too.
Activity 2: When you added images to your blog, you gave credit by creating a link back to the page where you found the image. When you write research reports, you will need to create “Works Cited” list and write a complete citation for each book, website, database, image, and other source you use. There are some excellent citation makers, including Noodletools and Easybib. Try them both. Locate how to make a citation for the MLA format. Write the URL for this site on your planner or other homework helper. USE IT when you have to create a “works cited” list.
Activity 3: Now, write a blog posting about what you have learned about website evaluation and bibliographic citations.
Congratulations! You have completed Teen Learning 2.0! Welcome to the 2.0 Team. Now, you can help cheer on other students completing this tutorial.
Your last assignment consists of blogging about your feelings and critiques of this tutorial. Please answer the following questions:
- What were your favorite discoveries or exercises on this learning journey?
- Which tools do you think you will use in the future, and how?
- Do you have any suggestions to change this tutorial?