Social Media and Education

I can remember the phrase vividly.  I swear that my mother must have said it so many times that she had to have dreams about it.  “Do unto others as you would have them do to you.”  Have you heard this?  I can remember growing up and fearing the moments that I made my parents mad.  I can also remember the one time I had to visit the Principal’s office and crying before I even got half way there.  The weird thing about that – is that I had no clue why I was even being called there.
In this day and age it seems as though that fear has subsided and the consequences of wrongful behavior no longer outweigh the repercussions that come with it.  Students these days are exposed to so much more than you were as a kid.  When I was in school there was no Facebook.  There was no Twitter or SnapChat.  If you had something to say to somebody, you said it to their face or mailed them a letter.  Students now believe that they can write or post what they want on social media sites and not have to live with the consequences.  We as a society need to change this way of thinking.
As an educational entity it is our job to reinforce the morals and the character that students are being taught in their homes.  Obviously it is also our job to provide an enriching and engaging education which is gained in a safe, but yet welcoming environment. The main focus of schools is to provide a curriculum that students can take with them when they leave and put it to good use as productive citizens. I understand that not everything that goes on in a school system is perfect – but we must keep striving for it.  I have been told that perfection is unattainable but the pursuance of such a feat can lead us to excellence.
The curriculum is not my worry.  Social skills are what I continue to worry about.  It’s not just Griggs County, but yet it is our entire society.  We continue to say that it is ok for people (adults and children) to write what they want on social network sites and not be held accountable for it.  It’s ok for political parties to hold debates where the sides bully each other.  It’s ok for local media outlets to create Facebook accounts where people can write in and complain about anything and everything.  Do you see a problem here?  We as a society have an obligation to make things right.  We have to teach our students moral and ethical behavior standards and we have to all be on the same page doing it.  Albert Einstein said it best: “I fear the day when technology will surpass humanity…..”  If we all lived by the phrase my mom engrained into my head a million times, maybe we could put a dent into social media ridicule.  

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