Creative Commons License and Rationale

Creative Commons License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 4.0 International License.

I was introduced to Creative Commons last year through another EDIM class. Having never used it before, I was enthralled.  As a high school English teacher, I am all about citing work, making sure students know the importance of giving credit to those whose work you have borrowed. I will admit, as a child of the 80’s, I am still on the learning curve of technology. I taught how to give credit for the written word in APA and/or MLA, I never occurred to me to make sure that other mediums were also credited. Learning that work, especially images, found on the web were not open for free use; I added citing images to what I included in my lessons. Last year, when I learned of creative commons, it was as if a light came on.   I was able to give my students a resource to use to appropriately locate allowed images and other media into their work. Students took to it immediately. Creative Commons allows for access to materials needed to make assessment more authentic and applicable to each student and his respective work. 

I thought I had Creative Commons mastered, my classes have even created a sign for it, I learned a new facet, the licensing aspect. Just as it never occurred to me to give credit to images and other mediums, I never thought to share and protect my work nor the work of the students in my. Upon investigating the licensing aspect of Creative Commons, I was intrigued. While there are many options for one to choose in regards to protecting one’s work, I found the “Attribution-Noncommercial International” license to be the best fit for me and my classroom.  I chose the specific license because it allows the user the freedom of sharing and adapting the medium, in essence allowing it to become “living and breathing” with changes and modifications. I chose the non-commercial aspect for a few reasons.  As a teacher, releasing student work for commercial use can be a gray area.  In order to circumvent a potential issue, I simply picked noncommercial. Furthermore, as an English teacher who preaches, “Cite, cite, cite” even with my low students, including required attribution to any time the work is used makes sense. How can I expect my students to understand the value in citation and giving credit to those who deserve it, if I do not teach them that there is value in their own creations. Teaching is an ongoing endeavor. I learn something new everyday and I am happy to pass this valuable tool onto my students.