Digital Literacy – “Cyber Civics™”

 

Journey School’s middle school digital media literacy program, also known as Cyber Civics, addresses the urgent and growing need to prepare our students to leave Journey School equipped with the skills to be ethical, confident and empowered digital citizens.

To get Cyber Civics for your school or to sample the lessons, please visit www.cybercivics.com or download the Cyber Civics Flyer (PDF).

About the Program

In 2010, there was a social media “incident” at Journey School. Like many school administrators around the world, ours found himself dealing with a whole new world. A parent of two children at the school, who’s also the Founder of CyberWise, thought she could help.

Having just completed a M.A. program in Media Psychology and Social Change and authored the paper New Media Literacy Education: A Developmental Approach (JMLE), Diana Graber was eager to put academic work into practice. So with the support of Administrator Shaheer Faltas and 6th grade teacher Gavin Keller, weekly middle school “Civics” classes where converted to “Cyber Civics” and program was born. Read more here.

Fast forward to today… we are thrilled and overwhelmed by the program’s successes:

  • Cyber Civics has been honored as an “Innovation in Education” award finalist by Project Tomorrow and the O.C. Tech Alliance.
  • Incidences of poor digital behavior no longer demand administrative time or attention (see our testimonials below).
  • Cyber Civics has been covered widely in the press (see media coverage below).

The following schools are now “Cyber Civics” schools:

  • Journey School, Aliso Viejo, CA
  • Coastal Grove Charter School, Arcata, CA
  • Greenwood School, Mill Valley, CA
  • Corvallis Waldorf School, Corvallis, OR
  • Blue Oak Charter School, Chico, CA
  • Novato Charter School, Novato, CA
  • Waldorf School of Mendocino County, CA
  • The Aspen School, Denver, CO
  • Desert Marigold School, Phoenix, AZ
  • Stone Bridge School, Napa, CA
  • Sun Ridge Charter School, Sebastopol, CA
  • Woodland Star Charter School, Sonoma, CA
  • Sebastopol Charter School, Sebastopol, CA
  • Juniper Ridge Community School, Grand Junction, CO
  • Monterey Bay Charter School, Pacific Grove, CA
  • Juab Jr. High School, Nephi, UT
  • Ramsey Jr. High School, Fort Smith AR
  • Central York Middle School, PA

Testimonials

“In the four years since the Cyber Civics™ classes started at our school, there have been only three reported incidences of poor digital behavior; none in the last two years. This is unheard of in this day and age. What has been a small investment has paid off tenfold. Plus it allows us to put our energy on what matters most, learning and teaching in a happy, safe, and healthy community.”  –Shaheer Faltas, Journey School Administrator

“Teaching Cyber Civics to my 6th graders is the favorite part of my week. The program is so easy to use and teach.” –Karina Salveen, Novato Charter School

“Over the course of three years working with Diana Graber and watching her develop the curriculum, I recognize that it is based on the the same cognitive developmental skills that are foundational to Waldorf teaching in 6th, 7th, and 8th grades. While this curriculum has found a rich home in Waldorf schools that foster ethical development, it is a curriculum that can fit in all educational settings.” –Bonnie River, Chair of Hybrid Program Waldorf Teacher Training, Rudolf Steiner College

 Cyber Civics is the best digital media literacy curriculum I’ve seen yet as it is develop-mentally based and creative.  The lessons are thoughtful, interactive and encourage kids to connect and collaborate about the very thing that has the potential of disconnecting them – technology! As an Administrator I wanted a curriculum that was thorough, timely and reflected the true realities that kids may encounter online. The curriculum needed to be simple to use and ready to launch with a price that wouldn’t break our budget. I also wanted a resource for parents and a place to access new apps and ask questions as they arose.  Cyber Civics has provided all of the above. I highly recommend this curriculum and commend Diana and her team for the creation of such a comprehensive and relevant curriculum. –Sheila Reilly, Administrator, Woodland Star Charter School

Visit the following pages for an overview of the program:

Digital Citizenship (6th Grade)

Information and Resource Literacy (7th Grade)

Media Literacy (8th Grade)

Learn more here:

Importance of Teaching Digital Citizenship

Cyber Civics™ Overview

Cyber Civics™ Blog

OC Tech Alliance and Project Tomorrow