I was alerted to the Saskatchewan School Library Association’s journal The Medium which has some interesting articles on Digital Citizenship, Inquiry Learning and The 21st century teacher librarian. This journal is only available to the public for a limited period but it is still a generous gesture by the SSLA. I was very interested in the article about digital citizenship and show we might teach our students to use the web and particularly aspects of Web 2.0 ethically and responsibly. It also raised the question of whether educational authorities’ and schools’ policies of blocking access is a sensible way of encouraging students to be ethical. I suspect that many students see the blocking of websites as more of a challenge than a lesson. On the other hand, schools know that there are some very narrow minded people out there who would immediately challenge a school’s right to give students access to Web 2.0 tools. Ethical use of information – in whatever form – is something that students need to be taught – but try finding out in your school who might be responsible for this and you’re likely to get some very evasive answers.
This weekend my wife and some other local runners are running the Traprain Law Race The Law (Scots for hill) mainly famous for being the site where a hoard of Roman silverware was found. The silver is likely to have been stolen in the 1st century AD by the Votadini tribe who dominated the south of Scotland in this period and Traprain Law is thought to be their capital. It’s also a very nice walk and on a clear day you have 360 degree views across the countryside and out to the sea. While the Votadini did not have Web 2.0, it’s pretty certain that there would have been some kind of censorship which prevented the more curious from getting information.