As season 10 of Cohort21 draws to a close, it’s a perfect opportunity to reflect on the process and look forward to the future. This year, my focus was on the digital wellbeing of our younger learners entering into the Upper School (Years 8 and 9). With an increasing amount of time spent online and in digital environments, we sought to ensure that our students are prepared to navigate these spaces safely and responsibly.
My final HMW questions was: “How might we engage students and gather feedback on programming that is designed to improve their learning and wellbeing?” The “Why?” I wanted (and saw a need) to equip our younger learners with the knowledge and skills to act responsibly and respectively in the digital world. I think this might be best served by engaging them in the process of evaluating and shaping the topics that they find are most important to them in the digital landscape.
Our collaboration with UpSavvy to pilot a Digital Citizenship platform was an exciting step toward this goal. Students (in Y6 and Y7) explored topics such as Privacy & Security, Digital Well Being, Digital Footprint, Online Relationships & Safety, Cyberbullying, and Media Literacy. This hands-on approach, combined with authentic dialogue, will allow us to engage our students and gather valuable feedback on the effectiveness of the programming for future implementation in Y8 and Y9.
This journey has reignited my passion for finding innovative solutions to the issues affecting our students’ wellbeing. The support and engagement of colleagues from other CIS schools have been invaluable, and I eagerly anticipate future collaborations.
While positioning new ideas within the current priorities of the school can sometimes be challenging, our persistence will pay off. We must continuing to engage with those willing to listen and seek opportunities to advance the important topics explored this year in Cohort21 by finding connections to what our school values and has prioritized. If we do this, we will eventually see our ideas come to fruition, even if they might manifest differently than how we might have initially envisioned.
As I reflect on my process this year, I am grateful for the support, passion, and dedication of our entire Cohort21 community. I learned that I still have the energy and passion to continue to bring forward ideas and find solutions for important issues that are affecting our students wellbeing. I really missed getting together with my colleagues from other CIS schools and connecting with other supportive and engaged people that have their students at the forefront of their minds and practice. I look forward to collaborating with many of you the future.