Persona, Citizenship, and Reflection

In this post, I am going to be talking a bit about the Critical Digital Literacy of a “digital persona” and having digital citizenship. A “digital persona” is important in our present day because many people use the internet every day to communicate and share ideas. Social media is a popular way of creating and maintaining connections, both personally and professionally. We need to make good “choice[s] in [our] presentation” of self when we are online because the information we put online is accessible by many members of the public, often forever (Hinrichsen, Juliet, and Antony Coombs).
We need to ensure we exercise control over our online persona by making smart choices about the “language, image[s], [and] content” we share (Hinrichsen, Juliet, and Antony Coombs). It is also important to consider the “privacy settings, placement, [and] disclaimers” when sharing our personal information online (Hinrichsen, Juliet, and Antony Coombs). Since we have “multiple potential audiences” for our “digital persona,” including “friends, colleagues, [and] employers,” we need to make sure our public information is appropriate for all viewers (Hinrichsen, Juliet, and Antony Coombs).
There are three different dimensions of a “digital persona…”
1. Identity building – understanding how identity works in a digital context, compared to real life. It is important to ensure the proper digital networks (Hinrichsen, Juliet, and Antony Coombs).
2. Managing Reputation– understanding how to be safe and appropriate about an online reputation. It is important to understand that what you put online is there for everyone to see, forever (Hinrichsen, Juliet, and Antony Coombs).
3. Participating – understanding how to appropriately participate with others in a digital setting. This could be on discussion boards for a class or a social network such as Twitter (Hinrichsen, Juliet, and Antony Coombs).
Understanding the critical digital Literacy of “digital persona” is important for teachers. We need to make sure our “digital persona” is appropriate and think about how students are another audience we need to consider. Additionally, we need to teach our students how to create an appropriate “digital persona.”
Over the past few weeks, I have been editing my “digital persona.” I have used a few different resources and methods to create my digital persona in new spaces. The three goals I have kept in mind when editing and creating my “digital persona are:
1. Have a presence. I want to make sure that when someone does an internet search on my name that a variety of appropriate and diverse information surfaces. A presence is good because if a future employer looks up my name they will see more evidence that makes me look credible.
To create a good presence online I have taken done some codebreaking and done some identity building with a few social media platforms. I made some new professional accounts because they will allow me to provide more valuable information about me to potential employers.
Pinterest – Here is my new Pinterest account where I will be collecting and sharing ideas all about teaching.

LinkedIn – Here is my new LinkedIn account where I will be sharing my accomplishments and goals, to help me connect with other professionals.

I also hope to develop an online presence on the new blog I made! I believe that the experience of creating this blog has been great for helping me develop and understand digital persona. Since I have made this blog I now have another digital platform that expresses my learning. I am excited to use my knowledge from creating this blog and apply it to my new blog. It has taught me that sharing your knowledge can be a pivotal part of your digital persona.

My Education Blog – Here I will be sharing my experiences as I complete my BEd. (It should be up and running in January).
2. Keep it appropriate. I want to ensure that I don’t have any images or information online I wouldn’t want the whole world to see. An appropriate “digital persona” is good because it will portray you in a positive light.
To keep my “digital persona” appropriate I took all the steps to make sure my social media accounts had the right privacy settings in place because these social networks are intended for my friends and family. I made sure anything on these social media accounts that the public could see was okay for everyone to see. I made sure I was able to manage my reputation online.
3. Make it current. I want to make sure my online presence is current because I am not the same person I was five years ago. Having a current “digital persona” is good because it will help others retrieve the most relevant information about who you are.
To make my “digital persona” current I made sure that I deleted accounts that I used when I was younger. I was no longer active on these accounts, but I noticed they still came up in a search. I want to make sure that anyone who searches for me is seeing relevant information.
What is Digital Citizenship? A digital citizenship is just like being a good citizen of any community. It important that online we are respectful, helpful, kind, and smart. We only should want to make our community a better place, not hurt it!
Cyber Bullying is a topic that comes to my mind when thinking of digital citizenship. It is important that we show students that mean things they say or do online are just as bad as if they do or say it in person. Cyberbullying is a topic that needs education, which is why it is so important for teachers to teach what being a good digital citizen looks like.
Digital Citizenship in the classroom – In this video, students are learning about being smart and good digital citizens.

Creative Makes:

I have made two creative makes I would like to share this week.

The Mindomo logo.

Mindomo Concept Map – Critical Digital Literacy
I made a Mindomo concept map to summarize all the different Critical Digital Literacies I have learnt this semester. It took me a bit of time to figure out how to use it, but watching the tutorial videos helped! This is a platform I look forward to using in my future classroom.

My Bitmoji. I made this avatar to represent myself in a cartoon form.

I have created a Bitmojji Avatar of myself. I think this fits well into the concept of ‘digital persona.’ Creating this Bitmoji was pretty simple. I think that having students create their own Bitmoji would be a great “get to know you” activity in the classroom because it is fun and allows for self-expression.
I have created a sketchnote to summarize what I have learnt about critical digital literacy. This was not too hard of a task. I drew my sketchnote on paper first and uploaded this as a jpeg. file to my laptop. This a great way to reach students who learn visually.
This is a great youtube video that can be used in the classroom to explain sketchnoting to students.
Throughout this last semester, I have learned so much about Critical Digital Literacy. The concepts I have learnt will have a lasting impact on how I will teach. The most important thing I will take away from my learning about CDL is how learning the digital domain has become as crucial to success as learning to read and write. Before this semester I never considered how important it was to teach students and learn ourselves, about Critical Digital Literacies. I have developed my skills in digital domain tons. I now know how to use many different tools from Padlet to Flip Grid. I can’t wait to use many of these new resources in my future classroom and teach my future students how to develop good digital literacy skills.

Thanks for reading!

Chelsea Wopnford


Hinrichsen, Juliet, and Antony Coombs. “The Five Resources of Critical Digital Literacy: a Framework for Curriculum Integration.” Research in Learning Technology, vol. 21, 2014,


Use, Analyze and Create


Welcome back! This week we are going to be talking about the critical digital literacies of using, analyzing and creating. I have learnt lots about these three critical digital literacies over the last few weeks and am excited to share my insights.

I have come to understand the digital literacy of ‘using’ as the skill to adequately and suitably use digital applications to reach a specific goal or outcome (Hinrichsen & Coombs). Using includes multiple characteristics such as “finding, applying, problem solving, and creating” (Hinrichsen & Coombs). The ‘finding’ characteristic includes the ability to put together the right information from credible digital sources. When ‘applying’ the individual is able to use their digital resources effectively to reach a specific goal. When ‘problem solving’ you are able to appropriately use digital resources to solve problems. The ‘creating’ characteristic means creatively using digital tools while implementing digital literacy skills (Hinrichsen & Coombs).

This week I have come to understand ‘analyzing’ as the ability to “make informed judgements and choices in the digital domain” (Hinrichsen & Coombs). Analyzing includes three main characteristics such as “deconstructing, selecting, and interrogating” (Hinrichsen & Coombs).  ‘Deconstructing’ means that you can distinguish the meaning given in digital communications (Hinrichsen & Coombs). ‘Selecting’ means you can choose the right digital tools to use, from applications to content (Hinrichsen & Coombs). ‘Interrogating’ means you can decipher if the content is effective or determine “the purpose and impact” of the digital materials (Hinrichsen & Coombs).

While I was working over the past few weeks these critical digital literacies and their characteristics have impacted my learning. As a university student, I am constantly doing research online, on the web and through databases. I never thought about it before, but when doing reasearch I am constantly employing these critical digital literacies. For example, I always need to ‘analyze.’ When looking for information I need to ‘select’ the right digital resources, ‘deconstruct’ the meaning in the content, and ‘interrogate’ the content to determine it’s “purpose and impact” (Hinrichsen & Coombs). I need to employ this digital literacy almost every day. It is very critical to my success as a student. My constant need for this digital literacy to be successful makes me think how important it is to foster this digital literacy in my future students.

I believe an awesome way to teach students how to ‘analyze’ is by showing them what types of information they need to search for and what a good resource looks like. There is an abundance of information in our digital world that we can get within seconds, which is great. However, with an abundance of information, there is information that is not factual or credible. Students need to learn how to decipher what information is good, and what is not. When I was observing a classroom I was introduced to an excellent way to teach children this skill. The teacher of this class was having her students do a research project. She wanted her students to learn how to properly ‘analyze.’ In her lesson, she brought up the website “the endangered tree octopus.” This website is a site full of fake information on a fake topic. She used this as an example to her students to show them what bad information looks like.

Tree octopus photo

The Endangered Tree Octopus

The Endangered Tree Octopus – follow this link to “the endangered tree octopus” website. It is an excellent resource to help students develop critical digital literacies.

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Kahoot! – Follow this link to see my first creation of a Kahoot! I made it about practicing basic math skills. This would be an excellent tool for an end of the day check in, to see what your students learned that day in class. It makes it fun and engaging for the students.

This week the critical digital literacy of ‘using’ influenced my creative make. I made sure that I was using “deploy digital tools appropriately and effectively for the task in hand” (Hinrichsen & Coombs). The job I wanted my Kahoot! to accomplish was to provide a formative assessment for students. I believe Kahoot! is an excellent resource for formative assessment because it is a useful way to check in with what your class is learning and what you still need to go over.

Digital Resources for Formative Assessment – Check out this link to one of my posts with more formative assessment resources.

Thanks for reading!

See you next time,



Hinrichsen, Juliet, and Antony Coombs. “The Five Resources of Critical Digital Literacy: a Framework for Curriculum Integration.” Research in Learning Technology, vol. 21, 2014,



Digital Resources for Formative Assessment

This week I collected a few resources I believe will help when doing a formative assessment in the classroom. Formative assessment allows the teacher to check in on students learning and understand what goals are being met, and which aren’t. These tools can help teachers to guide their teaching for their students to have the best learning experience.

Here are a few awesome resources:

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Kahoot – On Kahoot you can create a short quiz students can join in through their smartphones, tablets, or computers. You can create a quiz to see where your students are at.

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Padlet – Padlet is an online bulletin board. Here you can set up a board, ask a question, and have your students post an answer. This is awesome to see what your students are thinking before or after a lesson.

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Google Forms – Google forms allows you to make your own survey, with a long or short answer. Asking a few questions can help you know what you need to go over in the next lesson.

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Flipgrid – Flipgrid is an online video chat space. It allows students to make a quick clip in response to a question or reply to others. It is an awesome way to get students engaged in a conversation about the lesson while having the ability to gauge their understanding.

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Quizlet – On Quizlet, you can make your own digital flashcards. students can use these to see what information they are grasping from class.

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Poll Everywhere – Poll Everywhere gives you the ability to keep students engaged throughout the lesson, while also having knowledge of what they are understanding from the lecture. The application lets students respond to polls during a lesson using technology. This would be a good application for the older elementary ages.

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Back Channel Chat – This application is like twitter but is used only between the teacher and students. A good way to use this for formative assessment would be to send out a question to your class (which is following you) and have them respond.

Let me know of any other great resources in the comments. I love finding new resources I can use.



Making Meaning & Code Breaking

Over the past few weeks, I have been learning about the importance of two digital literacies, Code Breaking and Meaning Making.

Code Breaking  “involves the ability both to decipher and produce (encode) texts at a practical level” (coombs).  However, this skill typically has related to one’s ability to create and interpret forms of literature (coombs). The “elements” of code-breaking “do not transfer directly to the digital but they do have their equivalents” (coombs). This description of Code Breaking, as it applies to non-digital contexts, has assisted me in understanding how it can be applied to a digital context and why it is important. Unlike literature that exists outside of the digital world, digital contexts provide texts that are “predominantly multi-modal” and have “new operations for creating, navigating and interacting” (Coombs). Therefore, “the resource learners need for decoding and making meaning from multi-modal texts have an increased scope” (coombs).

There are a few characteristics of decoding such as, “navigation”, “conventions,” “operations,” “stylistics,” and “modalities” (Coombs). Each of these characteristics is important when an individual is decoding a digital context. It is important for “learners… to develop familiarity with the conventions and structures of digital media, sensitivity to the different modes at work within digital artefacts and confident use of the operational frameworks within they exist” (coombs). the development of these skills is pivotal for students because in our world children need to have the ability to understand and create their own understanding of digital contexts.

Making meaning is also a pivotal digital literacy. Making meaning means that the student’s power has been acknowledged, allowing them to partake “in the construction of a text” (coombs). It is a “reflective process” where “the content, style, and purpose of the text” relates to “prior experience, knowledge and responses of the reader”(coombs). Making meaning requires an individual to have “both understanding and interpretation” (coombs).

These two critical digital literacies impacted my work this week because they made me think of all the factors at play while I was learning how to use new applications. I thought about how I used prior knowledge to understand how these applications worked and implemented my decoding abilities. Through my creative makes, I can further show how I needed to use these critical digital literacies in order to create these makes I have shown below.

Canva – Follow this link to go to the Canva website. On this website, you can make a variety of visual aids. I made a Poster style checklist for children who are learning to write stories.

Canva logo

I have never worked with Canva before creating this poster. While I did this activity I had to do some code breaking and making meaning to develop my understanding of how the application worked. I used my previous knowledge from navigating other applications which are similar. Additionally, my “grasp of common functional procedures” gave me “confidence [when] engaging with new tools,” like Canva. My knowledge of operations was critical for me to have success with this application. If I did not have an understanding of operations the decoding would not have been as easy. While working with this application to create this poster I was able to “make connections” between my” new and existing knowledge,” which is a crucial characteristic of making meaning. Doing this exercise helped me to understand why it is important for teachers to teach their students how to develop a wide range of critical digital literacies. If I did not have any experience with technology I would have had a difficult time figuring out how Canva worked. I believe that my extensive knowledge of Adobe Photoshop was helpful while using this because that existing program knowledge helped me to move images and text within the program.



A story checklist I made with

As I was doing research this week about Code Breaking and Making Meaning I came across an awesome resource. I found Eleni Kyritsis blog. She “is the Leader of Digital Learning and Innovation” working as an elementary “Teacher [in] Melbourne, Australia” (Kyritsis). Her blog features an excellent post all about Spheros in the classroom. This blog post showcases several different lessons Spheros can be used for.

Right now you may be wondering; “What are Spheros?” Spheros are small spherical robots that teach children how to code and program. Children can use Bluetooth to connect their Sphero to an iPad. On the iPad, the child can create code for the robot to follow.

Eleni Kyristsis: “Sphero’s in the Classroom”

Kyristsis post about Spheros shows many examples of how this technology can be integrated into all types of lessons. In the lessons, she presents I saw many opportunities that would push students to develop both the digital literacies of code breaking and making meaning. For example, one of the lessons proposed that students can use Spheros to help develop their understanding of angles. In this lesson the teacher has the students calculate and draw angles, create them with tape on the floor, and program their Sphero to follow the angles. When doing this project children will need to enact their decoding skills because their preexisting knowledge will help them to navigate programming with the iPad. Many students will have had experience using iPads at home or in another context, this experience will assist them when they need to understand the operations. Likely, if the student has any experience with Apple products, they would know how to navigate to the app, touch the screen to complete actions, touch and drag the code blocks. These basic skills are important in developing a strong knowledge with a new application. Additionally, I think it is interesting how working with Spheros is a building block for creating base knowledge of programming. This application and technology is an easy introduction for the student to the basics of coding. The experience with Spheros will teach children preexisting knowledge that can serve as a basis for code breaking and making meaning if they go on to do coding in more complex applications and situations.

While working for Actua Canada this past summer I taught students how to program Spheros. I saw how the children we able to make meaning and code break, first hand. It took the students a little while to begin to understand how the program worked at first, but slowly used their past experiences, as well as trial and error, to make it work. I noticed that the children who had experience with iPads at home or in school were more successful, or faster, to figure out the program. The speed that the students with different experiences picked this skill up exemplifies how preexisting knowledge plays an important role in helping with making meaning.

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Sphero’s in the Classroom


Frameworks for Critical Digital Literacy


I have always considered ‘literacy’ regarding one’s ability to read and write. However, I have come to understand that in our increasingly growing digital world, literacy can also be applied in a digital context. It is important for one to develop their digital literacy, which “literacy incorporates print literacy, but adds new capacities, competencies, and comportments into the mix” (Hoechsmann, M., & DeWaard, H., 2015). The development of one’s digital literacy is important because “digital tools and practices permeate our everyday activities” and lives (Hoechsmann, M., & DeWaard, H., 2015). Therefore, we can consider digital literacy as critical, which is where the term ‘critical digital literacy’ streams from. I understand the word critical to have “two… dimensions at play” because “both are implied when we use the term” (J. H., & Coombs, A., 2013). First, critical has the connotation that one will use critical thinking in digital contexts for “analysis and judgement… [of] content, usage and artifacts of the technology” (J. H., & Coombs, A., 2013). Secondly, critical refers to the “external” (J. H., & Coombs, A., 2013) relations to technology. The “external” connections to technology refer to the extent of developing digital literacy is pivotal to one’s “development” and “social relations” that are connected to technology (J. H., & Coombs, A., 2013). In our world individuals will be challenged to have success in society without being competent in specific areas of technology use. Helping our students to develop their ‘critical digital literacy’ is key for their future success due to our ever more digital society.

Becoming familiar with the term of ‘critical digital literacy’ has helped me to understand the importance behind teaching children about the digital world. If students cannot develop technological skills, they will struggle to become successful in the future because we need to use and interact with technology daily. I cannot imagine someone would be able to successfully have a career without having knowledge of email, online banking, word processing systems, and many more technical skills that I feel we often take for granted. Just as we learned to read as children, we also need to develop our digital literacy abilities.

Understanding the concept of critical digital literacy will assist my participation in this course because it will encourage me to branch out and try new types of technology I could use as a teacher. For example, this week I learned how to use Padlet. I made a board to post ideas that I could use in the classroom based on the framework of USE, UNDERSTAND & CREATE: A Digital Literacy Framework for Canadian Schools. You can check out my first Padlet by following the link below. I plan to use this application in my future classroom as a teacher because I believe it is an awesome way to engage students in sharing their learning using technology. I am excited to try out many more applications and programs during this course that will come in handy when I am facilitating learning in my future classroom.


Check out my first Padlet 

The framework that I would like to share a few insights about is the USE, UNDERSTAND & CREATE: A Digital Literacy Framework for Canadian Schools. I selected this specific framework because I liked how this framework covered a broad range of aspects that would be important to teach children so that they can develop a multitude of digital competencies. I found it is important that the framework covered more than only developing student’s skills to use technology, but also put an emphasis on community, health, and consumerism. I found this important because in our present day it is difficult to separate the digital world from everyday life. The portion of the framework I found most interesting was the ‘digital health’ section. The section outlined the importance of developing a healthy relationship with technology. With our world becoming increasingly digitalized it is important that as teachers we teach our students how to have ‘digital health.’ One of the ways we can do this is by teaching our students the “skill [of] managing screen time and balancing [their] online and offline lives” (USE, UNDERSTAND & CREATE: A Digital Literacy Framework for Canadian Schools – Overview). In our classrooms we can exemplify managing screen time to our students by having a limited time throughout the day where the students are using computers or iPads, to avoid being in front of screens all day.

Additionally, I found that the portion of the framework ‘finding and verifying’ to be important. In this section of the framework, it outlines how important it is for “students” to develop “skills to effectively search the Internet for information they need” and after they need to be able to successfully “evaluate and authenticate the sources and information they find” (USE, UNDERSTAND & CREATE: A Digital Literacy Framework for Canadian Schools – Overview). As a teacher, we can show our students how to do this by informing them of what kinds of sources are acceptable and what to look for when deciding if the information is acceptable. A great example of teaching students how to achieve ‘finding and verifying’ is showing them a fake website. When I was in a placement, my associate teacher taught her students about understanding if the information they find is credible by showing them the ‘endangered tree octopus’ website. The ‘making and remixing’ section focused on how teachers should “enable students to create digital content…, use existing content for their own purposes… and to use digital platforms to collaborate with others” (USE, UNDERSTAND & CREATE: A Digital Literacy Framework for Canadian Schools – Overview).  I found that my current teaching and learning practices lined up well with the portion of the framework that outlined ‘making and remixing’ because I have done an abundance of work with children in STEM through my summer job with Actua Canada. We introduced children to coding by using Ozobots to read color codes the children could create. Please view the YouTube videos below to learn more about Ozobots, Coding for Kids, and Actua Canada.


What does Actua Canada do?

Actua Canada looks at digital literacy


What are Ozobots? 

How do I use Ozobots?

How do Ozobots teach children to code?


Above is a photo of Ozobots.

There is an abundance of digital competencies that teachers need to teach their students to help them have success. I am looking forward to implementing some of these ideas into my future classrooms to help my students develop a great critical digital literacy.

Thank you for reading,


Hoechsmann, M., & DeWaard, H. (2015). Introduction. In Mapping Digital Literacy Policy and Practice in the Canadian Education Landscape (pp. 1-5). Ottawa: MediaSmarts.
J. H., & Coombs, A. (2013). The five resources of critical digital literacy: A framework for curriculum integration. Research in Learning Technology, 21. Retrieved September 16, 2018, from
USE, UNDERSTAND & CREATE: A Digital Literacy Framework for Canadian Schools – Overview (n.d.). Retrieved September 17, 2018, from