Why the book?
Children live out much of their childhood and teenage years online nowadays, often far from the watchful eyes of their parents, teachers and carers. While they are acting and interacting, learning and playing in the online world, they are also building the values, attitudes, skills and knowledge that are meant to carry them through life and that will influence their future well-being. But are they getting sufficient opportunities and support to hone their critical thinking skills, and develop the skills they will need to become resourceful citizens able to play an active role in society? Are they learning how to behave ethically and empathetically online and offline, and building a positive digital footprint? And are they developing a sufficient understanding of rights and responsibilities to be able to protect privacy and personal data, and to become responsible consumers? “All Aboard for DigiTown!”is a fun, entertaining learning journey for young digital citizens through 10 digital themes centred on ‘Being online’, ‘Well-being online’ and ‘Rights online’. These are based on the Council of Europe’s successful Digital Citizenship Education model. As children progress through the stories, exercises and individual and group activities in the book, they will learn about using digital technology wisely, behaving respectfully and responsibly, and cooperating meaningfully online and offline. They end their journey with a backpack of badges to remind them of what being a digital citizen really means. A final section provides solutions, and offers teachers and parents a detailed overview of the competences their children are developing in order to better guide them on their path towards digital citizenship. The book can be used both in class, at home and in distance learning. It is adapted to the learning needs of children in the final years of elementary school (age around 9-12 years).
The 10 Themes in All aboard for DigiTown correspond to the 10 domains defined by the Council of Europe as underpinning all of our activity online. Each theme introduces key words and ideas through a story. The objective is for children to read for understanding, then check for comprehension. The 10 Themes in All aboard for DigiTown correspond to the 10 domains defined by the Council of Europe as underpinning all of our activity online. Each theme introduces key words and ideas through a story. The objective is for children to read for understanding, then check for comprehension. Each theme also includes exercises where children practice their knowledge and critical understanding. Activities generally involve several children, and aim to have children share and integrate what they have learnt into their daily life. By talking to others about what they have learnt they will not only improve their collaborative skills, but also reflect on their learning (metacognition). This improves self-confidence and self-efficacy, both important leverages for motivation.