Encouraging Kids to be Content Creators Instead of Content Consumers
Encouraging Students to Create Digital Content
Kids love spending time online, reading blogs, watching videos, and scrolling through social media. But what if they could be the ones creating all this cool content? Teachers can help their students become content creators by introducing them to different online platforms.
Classroom blogs are a great way to get students creating content. Students can post their writing, pictures of class projects, or even audio projects. It’s also a great way to showcase student work to parents. Many blogging platforms are easy to use, like Blogger and Live Journal. Edublogs was even made just for classroom and school library blogs.
Instructables is an online community where people write how-to guides. Students can contribute by signing up and creating accounts. They can even comment on other people’s work. This is a great opportunity to teach procedural writing and internet safety. Since their writing will be published publicly to the web, you can speak to your students about how this is a situation in which they want to do their very best.
There are several creative platforms out there for contributing to online communities that create storybooks and illustrations, such as My Storybook and Storyboard That. Storybird is a subscription service, but it can really get inspiration flowing. It lets students put words to already created (wordless) picture books from various professional illustrators.
When guiding your students towards being content creators, it is imperative to also teach them internet safety. First, when signing up for things, impress upon your students that they are not to share personal identifying information on the internet. Another major point you’ll want to go over is how to behave respectfully and responsibly in online communities. Talk about what appropriate actions your child can take if they see they don’t have something good to say about, such as simply moving on to find work that they do like. If you are specifically asking your students to provide constructive feedback to one another, practice this skill several times in person before having them try it online.
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Getting your students to be content creators can help your students be responsible online citizens, as well encourage them to develop pride in their work. So, teachers, let’s encourage our students to create digital content and explore the endless possibilities of the online world!
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