Rebecca Sipos, President & CEO
Creating Digital Citizens: Civic Duty meets the Online Era
By Becky Sipos, President & CEO

As the Iowa caucuses and the New Hampshire primary have dominated the news, I have been thinking more and more about citizenship. Peggy Noonan’s recent column talked about how seriously New Hampshire residents take their responsibility. They even have a state law that requires they host the first primary.

After someone described the people at one event as “professional voters,” Noonan said it was not that. She described the diverse group in attendance and said. “It is more like: ‘We may be a field hospital, we may be high, we may be damaged by the collapse of the American culture, we may be the prime victims of deindustrialization, but we are: citizens. And we do our job. We will pick a president.”

Noonan said, “Choked me up as I witnessed it. No joke. Choked me up.”

That sense of responsibility, of caring about your country and the process of electing a president made me stop and think Are we instilling that feeling in our young people today? Not just the sense of responsibility, but the sense of caring, the sense of taking care of your community, planning for the future.

Thinking about community brought me to thinking about Jason Ohler’s new book that I just read, 4Four Big Ideas for the Future, a compilation of four presentations that he has given. The idea of digital citizenship figures prominently in most of Ohler’s work. What brings these four presentations together is Ohler’s vision of helping people reshape their attitudes toward learning, community, and living a technological lifestyle. Read more >>

Learn More About Digital Citizenship With Jason Ohler!

Having a class full of students who are constantly connected online can be anxiety producing. We hear scary stories about cyberbullying, sexting, and other things, but we're not there to supervise and help them see the consequences of their decisions. How do we teach students good citizenship in an anonymous environment?

To answer this question, we called in an expert: professor emeritus, speaker, writer, teacher, and cyber researcher, Jason Ohler! If you’re looking for strategies to engage students and parents in digital citizenship education, you don’t want to miss Ohler’s presentation on Digital Citizenship. Available for free to all Character.org members that join this month!

Become a Member of Character.org_600 x 45
Submit Your Promising Practices - Only 2 weeks left!

What unique, specific, and effective character education strategies do you use in your school, classroom or youth development program?  We want to hear about an aspect of your program that other schools can learn from and replicate. Recipients will be honored at our annual Forum which will be held in Washington, DC. in October, where they will share their successful strategies with other educators. Don’t miss out on your opportunity to shine. Apply Now!
​ PP Badge_2016
Forum 2016 Speaker Proposals Due Mar. 1st!

The theme is Educate, Inspire, Empower: Building Productive & Caring Citizens. Are you ready to inspire hundreds of educators from around the world? Convince us your session will be the highlight of the Forum. Submit a proposal >>

Blogs sm 

Noteworthy Blog Posts
The Digital World: Reduce Restrictions to Increase Competence” by Chris Parrott
How to Cultivate Humble Leadership” by Vicki Zakrzewski
Character, Literacy & Language Development at Bayless Junior High” by Bob Efken

Character.org Designates 68 Schools and 4 Districts as 2016 State Schools of Character.
Each year, Character.org and its state affiliates select schools and districts that demonstrate a dedicated focus on character development that has a true positive impact on academic achievement, student behavior, and school climate. Press Release >>

Membership Corner_2

Character.org Welcomes the Following New Members

Kevin Bedard Marc Citro Elizabeth Public Schools
Karen Foley  Kimberley Giles Markham International Education Center 
Julie Johnson  Penny Keith Forsyth Country Day School 
Stephanie McSherry
Kristin Molyneux Jonas E. Salk Middle School 
Kelly Nickel  Dana Reisboard  George Washington Middle School 
Scott Seider  Clare Shubert  Haverford School District
Kalle Wahlstrom

Follow us on:  Facebook YouTube
 Donate Button_sm

Cvent - Web-based Software Solutions