Thing 12 from 23 Things focuses on Open Educational Resources (OERs). For an educational resource to be Open, it needs to be “Open data and content can be freely used, modified, and shared by anyone for any purpose” (The Open Definition). We were tasked with finding OERs that were relevant to our own field.

Bullying OER

I was a little skeptical to find anything about bullying, but the TES website proved me wrong. Not all resources on this page are free. However, not everything I found was based in research, even advocating to harmful solutions (suspensions, exclusions) or using inappropriate/harmful ideas/words (e.g., those who bully doing it because they like bullying; using labels like bully).

One resource I did find was the Loud Mouth Education and Training Is it Bullying Activity. This activity encourages students to explore the definition of bullying (although the definition used it broad) and categorize various situations into bullying or not bullying.

Mental Health OER

I quite enjoyed the Tackling Mental Health OER from the University of Edinburgh Open.Ed. The activity provides a great opening to have students to start thinking about what mental health is, and how it applies to them. (5th grade is the earliest suggested on the OER) 

I would likely include some bullying materials in a unit on Mental Health. As often, this makes the easiest links to start talking about the social and cultural influences on mental health. Bullying is certainly a part of that.

Thoughts…

While I fully support OERs, I believe users need to be reminded to be critical. Those who use OERs should do some of their own research to make sure that the tools are useful and based in evidence. In my courses, I try to use OERs and encourage students to share their work under an open framework. However, in looking more at what is available on bullying specifically, I think I will also need to amp up how to use and explore these resources and be critical of them.

Perhaps this means, I should start creating more comprehensive OERs based on my class lectures and research…


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