Happy New Year! We can hardly believe 2015 is over, but we do have big plans in store for 2016. Throughout the year, look out for new campaigns and challenges to inspire your students to save our air.
The first challenge is an easy and fun way students can share their sustainable actions with the larger OnAir community. It’s called … (drum roll please) … the Sustainable Selfie Challenge!
The rules are simple:
- Students who are 13 years and older can participate.
- Students take selfies showing a sustainable action. Whether they’re taking a walk to school, riding a bike, eating a local apple, or just getting outside, we want to see it!
- Students upload their selfies to Instagram using the hashtag #onairsustainable
- Students take a screengrab of the Instagram upload and add it to their OnAir account
Teachers and students across the OnAir community will be able to see their Sustainable Selfies together in one place. Students will earn badges as they go and we’ll select one selfie each week to promote on the OnAir site! Sustainable Selfie is the perfect challenge to use in your classroom or club, and can be used in conjunction with other challenges and campaigns.
If you choose to promote the Sustainable Selfie Challenge, we recommend coupling it with a brief but important lesson on digital citizenship. (How To Take “Good” Selfies 101, if you will.)
Beyond the more obvious lessons regarding personal privacy, it can be helpful for students to think about their digital presence in a larger context, whether that is their digital footprint, or how their photo-taking impacts the environment around them. For example, do you remember one of the biggest selfie fiascos of 2015? In September, a flood of selfie-crazed tourists disrupted sea turtle nesting on a beach in Costa Rica. And let’s not forget the bizarre trends of taking selfies at funerals and with dangerous wild animals.
On the positive side, selfies have been used to promote gender equality in India, encourage New Yorkers to visit their public library, and teach public speaking. OnAir’s Sustainable Selfie Challenge is an excellent opportunity for students to practice both environmental and digital citizenship.
For inspiration on teaching about digital footprints, check out TeachingChannel’s middle school lesson idea here. For an overview of different angles to take when teaching about digital citizenship, check out this article.
We can’t wait to see your Sustainable Selfies and hear about your results!