LA PUENTE, CA – Nueva Vista senior Joshua Almeida completed a series of digital citizenship classes that teach students to be safe and responsible on digital platforms, and was inspired to write a skit on the consequences of cyberbullying to perform in front of Edgewood Academy students.
“We wanted to take what we learned and share it with younger students because they look up to us,” Almeida said. “I thought that was the best way to communicate the message.”
Bassett Unified’s three elementary schools, K-8 academy, middle school and two high schools were recognized as Common Sense Schools, completing lessons on internet safety, privacy and security, relationships and communication, and information literacy.
“Our responsibility to our children growing up in this digital age is to teach them how to be safe and civil inside and outside of their classrooms, as well as online,” Interim Superintendent Debra French said. “Students will have a strong foundation on how to use digital platforms in a way to support their learning.”
Teachers from each grade level at each of the seven schools chose three lessons to deliver through Common Sense Education, a nonprofit organization providing curriculum on how to teach students to become responsible digital citizens, ensuring students learned the tools needed to practice digital citizenship for the rest of the school year.
“Bassett Unified is providing opportunities for our students to learn how to use everyday technologies to boost their academics,” Technology Integration Specialist Michael Jephcott said. “Bringing Common Sense into our classrooms also teaches students how technology can affect their personal and social lives, and how they can navigate those different levels in a way that furthers their success.”
The cyberbullying skit resonated with Barbara Granados’ sixth- and seventh-grade special needs class, who have personal smartphones and computers. Granados’ class concentrated on writing and receiving emails and exploring what media was like before the advent of 24-hour cable news programs.
“Having the high school students come in to mentor really connects the bridge between classes,” Granados said. “We have found that after taking the Common Sense classes, students are more likely to contact an adult face to face to deal with an issue.”
011818_BASSETT_COMMONSENSE1: A Van Wig Elementary student logs into a reading program with a personalized username and password. Bassett Unified’s three elementary schools, K-8 academy, middle school and two high schools were recognized as Digital Citizenship schools by having students practice internet safety, learn about privacy and security protections, how to communicate and develop professional relationships online, and gather credible information.
011818_BASSETT_COMMONSENSE2: Bassett High School students learn how to responsibly send professional emails, use presentation tools and how to obtain credible sources online as part of a Common Sense Education courses.