Project Title:  How Vast is Our Online Footprint?

Standards Met:

I’m using the ISTE NETs standards: 

3.        Research and information fluency.  Students apply digital tools to gather, evaluate, and use information.

a. Plan strategies to guide inquiry

b. Locate, organize, analyze, evaluate, synthesize, and ethically use information from a variety of sources and media

c. Evaluate and select information sources and digital tools based on the appropriateness to specific tasks

d. Process data and report results

4. Critical thinking, problem solving,and decision making

Students use critical thinking skills to plan and conduct research, manage projects, solve

problems, and make informed decisions using appropriate digital tools and resources.

a. Identify and define authentic problems and significant questions for investigation


5. Digital citizenship 

Students understand human, cultural, and societal issues related to technology and practice legal and ethical behavior.

a. Advocate and practice safe, legal, and responsible use of information and technology

Enduring Understanding:

Everyone can mold their image online and should be aware of the message that it sends to the digital community.

Essential Questions:

Does a person’s online footprint represent them?

How can we be aware of our online representation?

What things do we do that help to mold our digital footprints?

How might other people interpret our own digital footprints?


Goal: Find information about people, who you do not know, online. Draw conclusions about these people and who they are.

Extension for older students: Do the same activity but on another classmate selected at random.  Then see if you can identify which footprint is connected with which student in the class (teacher would act as a mediator to ensure that no inappropriate information came out).

Role: Researcher

Audience: The person you are researching. The rest of the class when the time comes for discussion.

Situation: What someone puts online is what makes up their Digital Footprint.  Based on the Digital Footprint of a person, what conclusions can you draw about them?

Product: Short summary or brief description of who each person researched is, based on their digital footprint.

Six Facets of Understanding:

Explain:  What a person posts online is just part of who they are but it can define how others view them. There are certain types of activities that many of us do online that help contribute to our digital footprints.

Interpret: You can put a personal spin on the information that you find about someone or hypothesize the context of the information.

Older student extension (based on the paragraph description of someone’s footprint, how would we interpret the data to predict who the subject is)

Apply: People will take the information that they find about you online and create a representation of what kind of person they believe you to be. Knowing this, what sorts of habits do we need to establish and what precautions do we need to take to control our own digital footprints.

Have perspective: Everything that you place online is a reflection of who you are. However, it’s also possible to draw inaccurate conclusions about people based on incomplete digital profiles

Empathize: Others can make connections with you based on information about you that they can relate to or sympathize with.

Have self-knowledge: What I put online is seen as a representation of who I am. Therefore I need to be sure that this representation is a positive one.