Even by conservative estimates, the average American spends over 6 hours per day staring at a screen. That’s a lot of time. What does the scientific research say about it? Is it good or bad for us? This video comes with a facilitator guide and student handout that helps guide the discussion of this activity.
Trolls are all over the internet, just annoying people to no end. What makes someone an internet troll? Are some people just destined to be a troll, or do they develop this ability? Believe it or not, there have been numerous scientific studies surrounding this behavior. Explore the science behind trolling behavior in the latest Above the Noise video. This video comes with a student handout that helps guide the discussion of this activity.
The great thing about the Internet and cell phone technology is that it's available all the time, 24/7. But is there a downside to being connected all the time? In this video from FRONTLINE: "Digital Nation," 17-year-old Greg and his parents describe his desire to stay connected to his friends at all times. This video comes with discussion questions.
Facial recognition is creeping more and more into our daily lives. Facebook and Google use it for auto-tagging photos. Snapchat uses it to create hilarious filters. And Apple’s new iPhone will allow you to use your face to unlock your phone. But this same technology can be used by governments and companies to learn as much as they can about you. Find out how facial recognition technology works in the newest Above the Noise video. This video comes with a student viewing guide.
Tagging friends on social media is a great way to connect with others and capture memorable experiences. But what if they don't want to be tagged? Encourage your students to take responsibility for how they may affect the digital footprints of others.
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New tech, like location services and smart devices, helps make our lives easier and opens opportunities that didn't exist before. But these innovations also come with a cost -- especially to our privacy. Help students consider the benefits and drawbacks of these new technologies -- and decide whether they're ultimately worth it.
Social media gives us a chance to choose how we present ourselves to the world. We can snap and share a picture in the moment or carefully stage photos and select only the ones we think are best. When students reflect on these choices, they can better understand the self they are presenting and the self they aim to be.
Unencrypted communication over the Internet works a lot like sending a postcard: it can be read by anybody along the delivery route. Communication is routed through intermediary computers and systems, which are connected to many more computers and systems. Encryption, or encoding information so it appears scrambled to anyone who doesn’t know the key, is a way to wrap a postcard in an envelope. While it can never be 100% secure, stronger encryption makes it harder for people to get to the contents.
The lesson elements in this module teach students about the privacy principle “Communication over a network, unless strongly encrypted, is never just between two parties”. They are designed to be independent and flexible, so you can incorporate them into any size lesson plan. Student resources are available at https://teachingprivacy.org/someone-could-listen/.
Summary of Learning Objectives: Students can articulate how the multi-step, multi-party pathways of networked communication affect users’ privacy; students can identify and use more secure communication options.
Target Age: High school, college undergraduate.
Any time you interact online, that information is recorded in the network. And, as with in-person communication, once you’ve shared something, you can’t control what happens to it — or how people will interpret it. Other people can repost or forward content to any audience without your permission, websites can sell information to other businesses, and data can be legally subpoenaed. Websites and search engines automatically pick up and duplicate content, making it impossible to “unshare” — the Internet never forgets!
The lesson elements in this module teach students about the privacy principle “Sharing information over a network means you give up control over that information — forever”. They are designed to be independent and flexible, so you can incorporate them into any size lesson plan. Student resources are available at https://teachingprivacy.org/sharing-releases-control/.
Summary of Learning Objectives: Students can enumerate ways their information may be recorded, re-shared, and reinterpreted once it is online; students can use privacy settings and imaginative self-inquiry to limit potentially harmful sharing.
Your online activities and communications are as much a part of your life as your offline activities and communications; they are interconnected and can affect your life and relationships in the same way.
The lesson elements in this module teach students about the privacy principle: “The online world is inseparable from the ‘real’ world”. They are designed to be independent and flexible, so you can incorporate them into any size lesson plan. Student resources are available at https://teachingprivacy.org/online-is-real/.
Summary of Learning Objectives: Students can give examples of how online and offline activities affect each other; students can think imaginatively about the potential consequences of their posts for themselves and others.
Creating an identity on the Internet or impersonating somebody else is often just a matter of a few clicks. Currently, there is no foolproof way to match a real person with their online identity. This means that you can never be sure with whom you are communicating and that someone could steal your online identity and impersonate you!
The lesson elements in this module teach students about the privacy principle: “Identity is not guaranteed on the Internet”. They are designed to be independent and flexible, so you can incorporate them into any size lesson plan. Student resources are available at https://teachingprivacy.org/identity-isnt-guaranteed/.
Summary of Learning Objectives: Students can explain why it is difficult to be sure who one is communicating with online; students can investigate and evaluate the legitimacy of services that want their personal information.
Even if you’re not actively using the Internet, someone else may be sharing information about you — intentionally or unintentionally. So, avoiding the Internet does not guarantee privacy.
The lesson elements in this module teach students about the privacy principle: “You can’t avoid having an information footprint by not going online”. They are designed to be independent and flexible, so you can incorporate them into any size lesson plan. Student resources are available at https://teachingprivacy.org/you-cant-escape/.
Summary of Learning Objectives: Students can enumerate ways their offline activities generate data that is stored and shared online; students can communicate effectively with others about everyone’s information-sharing preferences.
Most Internet technology is not designed to protect the privacy of those who use it; in fact, most technology providers make money by leveraging your private information. “Privacy policies” are generally written to protect those providers from lawsuits, not to protect users’ privacy. Laws and regulations cover only certain aspects of privacy and vary from place to place — and enforcement is even more varied. So, like it or not, your privacy is your own responsibility and requires your constant attention.
The lesson elements in this module teach students about the privacy principle: “Only you have an interest in maintaining your privacy”. They are designed to be independent and flexible, so you can incorporate them into any size lesson plan. Student resources are available at https://teachingprivacy.org/privacy-requires-work/.
Summary of Learning Objectives: Students can articulate why technology design, laws, and business policies do not inherently protect their privacy; students have the capacity to acquire new privacy-management skills as technology and policies change.
This site is a case study in which students are invited to share (through writing or discussion) their opinions about how a situation should be handled. This case study is related to the personal safe use of digital devices.
This case study goes as follows:
Peter’s longtime close friend, Bridget, is wrapped up in an online relationship with some older guy on MySpace, a social networking website. Peter senses danger, but Bridget resents his warnings and wants him to butt out. What can he do without risking their friendship?
This video explains ten commandments of computer ethics. Students will learn the thou shalt NOTS of computer practices. The wording is more appropriate for high school students, but can easily be used with middle school students, especially with class discussion.
This lesson sets the stage for why we want to learn about how the Internet works. First, students share what they currently know about how the Internet works through a KWL activity. Then, students watch a short video that introduces Vint Cerf and the Internet at a high level. Students skim a memo written to the Internet Engineering Task Force (IETF) by Vint Cerf in 2002 entitled “The Internet is for Everyone”, which calls out a series of threats to the prospect that the Internet should be an open, easily and cheaply accessible resource for everyone on the planet. Finally, we foreshadow the practice of PT at the end of the unit. Many of the questions and challenges raised by Vint Cerf still apply today, and students will be asked to research and present on one for the Practice PT.
The purpose of this lesson is to set up and motivate students to be receptive to learning about some of the technical aspects of how the Internet functions. We want the message to be clear that a huge part of being able to solve these problems, or even to function as an informed citizen, is to be educated about how the Internet actually works as a system that is built, engineered, and maintained by people.
It is both interesting and important to know that the protocols or rules by which Internet traffic is governed are not owned or controlled by any government or business (at the moment). It’s a group of well-meaning citizen-engineers dedicated to keeping the Internet free, open and robust for all.
The Internet Engineering Task Force (IETF) is the group of mostly volunteer citizens that proposes and develops all of the standards and protocols that exist on the Internet. Request for Comments (RFC) documents, like the one we use in the lesson, is how these standards and protocols are defined and published for all to see on the IETF website. They are some of the best-written technical documents in existence.
And with a little background in how bits work, what’s necessary for protocols to work when bits are transferred over wires, they are relatively accessible reading. Here’s the full set: https://www.ietf.org/rfc.html. RFC 000 (the first one) is related to what we ask students to do in the next several lessons.
Students will be able to:- connect a personal experience to one challenge related to the idea that "The Internet is for Everyone".- cite one example of how computing has a global effect -- both beneficial and harmful -- on people and society.- explain that the Internet is a distributed global system that works on shared and open protocols.
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