• Susan Hefley

Moving to Digital Leadership: the theory


My perspective on Digital Citizenship has been slowly changing and evolving to one that focuses more on Digital Leadership. Why? TLA's Tech Camp Keynote speaker (a 10 year old girl named Liv, ---and if you don't know @TheLivBits you need to check her out) said it best: "Kids deserve a digital life that helps them deepen their passions! They need to use Social Media to connect with experts and others that share their passion. #Synergize"

She goes on to perfectly sum up what it means to be Future Ready.

My thoughts are also influenced by Jennifer Casa-Todd's book Social Leadia in which she compels library leaders to move from more traditional Digital Citizenship to more Digital Leadership. Sylvia Duckworth's sketchnotes help explain this shift:

She encourages us to not just move towards a positive spin of responsible digital citizenship but to encourage students to be Digital Leaders. To encourage all students to be more like Olivia. To give them a voice and to share their learning with authentic audiences. I believe that she is right, EVEN at the elementary level. Think about how many students will have social media accounts at 13, or some even before they leave elementary school. They need to be shown, modeled and practiced Digital Leadership BEFORE this point.

To get students to this point, we first need to get teachers there. Plano ISD's Nancy Watson presented "Cultivating a #DigCit state of mind" at TLA where she broke down the teacher or adult's stages of growth towards Digital Leadership. I LOVE the infographic she created explaining the stages from Digital Aversion to Digital Advocacy (what we might also call Digital Leadership). I can picture in my head using this graphic to begin PD with teachers and asking them to rate themselves. Which face do they currently have? Where are they on the continuum? Of course, this must be followed with Where do your students need and deserve for you to be? It is with those teachers that I think the HOW lies. We need more and more of our teachers to become Digital Leaders, or at least move beyond aversion, to be able to take advantage of teachable moments during their everyday classroom experiences. #KidsDeserveIt #DigCit #IwillBeaDigitalAdvocate #DigLeaders


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© 2020 Susan Hefley.

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