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Stop asking your students to turn off their devices!

All citizens who are part of the digital world must learn to manage the different devices if they do not want to be left behind. However, equally important is to teach the responsible use of technology.

Young people and children today have been born in a digital environment. It’s no use preventing them from playing with mobile phones or chatting with their friends. Technology is the future. Therefore, it is vital that they learn to respect it, that they educate themselves in it and that they know the ways to protect themselves.

The school and the institute are the ideal places to learn all these questions since teachers are supposed to be prepared to teach their students to face the real world. But then, why are they turned off or handed over all the devices when they enter the classroom?

These teachers are missing out on a golden opportunity to teach these young people how to use technology in a responsible, ethical and safe manner. Most students use their computer, mobile or tablet to watch educational videos, find useful information or download exercises online. Also, this is your way of communicating with your family and your peers. Why insulate them?

It is also true that some people still have too much work ahead. It is sadly very common to hear cases of cyberbullying, guys who use technology to offend or attack another classmate or teacher. In these cases, how can we teach them to use technology without it being used to do evil? Following the advice of the Canadian Education Association :

Talk every day about the importance of sharing safely. Show them how private information can be filtered through hidden identifiers. Why not send committed photos? What can things be shared on the Internet?

It is important that teachers have basic knowledge of safety. This way they can teach their students, for example, how to choose a secure password, the importance of changing passwords on a regular basis or the problem of sharing passwords with friends.

Technology has created a new digital citizenship that must learn and work day by day. In addition to studying all these issues in the classroom, a tip might be to invite expert speakers to talk to teachers, students and parents. It is no use if these actions are carried out once a year, but should be organized on a daily or weekly basis to provide an integral knowledge to all components of the educational community.

There are many people, and quite a few young people, who are using technology and scientific advances to make a difference in society. Search the Internet and share these stories with your students, which will make them rethink the misuse they may be making of their devices.

Do not even try to become an innovative teacher, giving your advice. Follow the recommendations of educational agencies to teach your students responsibly. Also, in these guides, you will also find useful information to help you manage your students in open environments.

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