Librarian Rebecca Strauss Takes On Digital Wellbeing

May 14, 2024

Digital wellbeing refers to the overall state of an individual's physical, mental, and emotional health in the context of their digital interactions and technology usage. In today's digital age, the importance of digital wellbeing is undeniable. In an effort to address this challenge with students, Rebecca Strauss, CDH Librarian, has enrolled in the LiveMore ScreenLess program to become a Certified Digital Wellbeing Educator.

The LiveMore ScreenLess certification was founded by KK Myers in 2019 and gained traction with the passage of a Digital Wellbeing bill in 2021, providing essential funding to equip educators like Ms. Strauss with the necessary expertise. As part of the first cohort of Secondary Media Specialists/Librarians to receive scholarships for the certification program, Ms. Strauss embraced the opportunity to become a leader in digital wellbeing advocacy for CDH.

For her practicum, Ms. Strauss chose to engage in ten hours of facilitated discussions with a group of students. Collaborating with fellow educator Mark McGuire, she integrated her practicum work into the TLC/Health class. “It was a natural fit,” said Strauss, “as TLC stands for Thinking, Learning, and Communicating and Digital Wellbeing aligns with health standards. Through these sessions, she and the students delved into the social, emotional, mental, cognitive, and physical aspects of digital wellbeing, having open dialogue and providing a safe space for discussion.

While faculty may facilitate discussions, the initiative is student focused. The goal is that conversations are led and guided by student voice.The insights that students have shared/given have at times been both eye opening and very relatable” noted Strauss. “It's important to remember that students today are experiencing digital media in a way that most adults in the building never have.”

Ms. Strauss emphasizes that discussions about digital wellbeing are not about demonizing technology but rather promoting balanced, intentional, and ethical use. She aims to create an environment that is free from judgment, encouraging students to reflect critically on their digital habits and their impact on overall wellbeing.

Equipped with the tools and resources provided by the certification program, Ms. Strauss aims to lead discussions on digital wellbeing both in the library and the classroom. She hopes to instill a sense of digital literacy and mindfulness, empowering students to navigate the digital world with confidence.


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