How Open should our classrooms be?

When we first started the debate this I was sure that I wanted to create a transparent space where parents could see any of the work that their child had created and that we could share that openly. But little by little I began to question my philosophy.

One of the articles Dryden shared with us called “Openness to Ideas, Perspectives and Change Yields Trust in the Classroom” Is my motto. Transparency is best and that it is good to be open with those around you about the things that are happening and that way you will create a better bond with the people that you are working with. I still believe that being open with people about what is happening is going to create some of the best relationships, but s sharing students work freely on the internet really something that I want to be apart of?

Photo Credit:CREST ResearchFlickr viaCompfightcc

While one of Ashley’s articles titled, “Teens speak: Should students publish their school work online?” talks about how some students choose not to make their blogs public, so that nobody can read their work or copy it and make it into something that it was never meant to be. Shouldn’t we all have a say in what our work gets to be used for? And maybe once we understand the consequences of having our work online we might change our opinion to how we display our work. Students should be given a choice in what their assignment says about them and who can see is.

I believe now that we can share students work online if we have their consent, or in the case of presentation I heard last night if we are using an anonymous student to teach the class about some common error that is present in their work. But even if we are sharing their work online we should consider what it could mean for the student and their relationships and digital identity. We don’t want to control what happens to their digital identity, but we do want to share their expectational skills with family, friends and peers.  As teachers we need to teach our students what a safe online presence looks like and how we can shape it into something that we want to show the whole world, but don’t have to show if we aren’t comfortable.



2 Replies to “How Open should our classrooms be?”

  1. Hey Raeann!
    I totally agree with you in regards to the important role teachers have in teaching students how to conduct positive online identities. I’m not sure about you, but I don’t ever recall digital citizenship being a very high prioritized topic when I was in elementary and high school. We were told that we need to be careful and only post things that are appropriate, but we weren’t necessarily taught how to do this. I have always been a cautious sharer online but this also makes me wonder how this will change for me when I become a teacher…Do you think that people’s perspectives of sharing changes when they actually become teachers?
    Great summary!


  2. Hey Raeann!

    I really like your connection to the other class. I was in that class and was thinking about using an this idea to share student work online. This way students are not as effected by sharing the work online and they can claim the work as theirs if they feel comfortable with doing so. I think transparency in the classroom is important to build trust and communication between parents and teachers, but as teachers we must remember who else may be affected by the transparency.
    Great post!


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