All Grown Up?

I’ve been having such a hard time starting this post, so I’ve put it off for 2 days.  I’ve now come to the decision that I don’t HAVE to have final decisions made on how I feel…….part of blogging is the act of writing to help formulate ideas.  So, that being said, here it is.

http://www.pbs.org/wgbh/pages/frontline/kidsonlineFRONTLINE: growing up online | PBS via kwout

(Frontline – PBS)
As many educators and parents are aware of, PBS has been airing a show titled “Growing Up Online” on Frontline.  The tagline on the site right now reads “Just how radically is the Internet transforming the experience of Childhood?” and I think that really sums up my feelings.  You really MUST watch this, it’s our responsibility as adults to join in the discussion about how our young people are growing up and becoming ready to enter adulthood.  I’m not going to describe the entire show, I’m not going to critique it, I just want to put a few of my thoughts out there……..

  • I have to come to terms with the good/bad sides of most things that my children will encounter when growing up, and not ban potentially useful or harmless experiences because of my fear
  • I need to learn even MORE about the issue than I currently know
  • All teachers should be required to watch this
  • All parents should WANT and need to watch this
  • The problem isn’t the internet or social networking, it’s the lack of education about the topic on all levels from government to parents
  • I’m doing the best that I can to stay up to speed with the changing world both as an educator and parent…………….it feels like a losing battle

You can watch the episode online RIGHT NOW (just click here) if you missed it – I’d love your thoughts, they might help me get my mind around some of the issues raised……..

4 thoughts on “All Grown Up?

  1. Kate-
    I didn’t agree with the tagline. Based on what I saw on the show, it hasn’t radically changed the childhood experience. Most of the things that the show dealt with (bullying, a need to be accepted, etc.) are things that I dealt with 20 yrs ago. The difference is that the Internet 1) increases access to information and 2) extends and enhances their ability to socialize.

    I think we we understand that, we can really see that we can help students use social networks and Internet resources responsibly.

  2. Kevin –
    Glad I could help!

    Eric –
    You’ve really been making me think today! As for my thoughts on the tagline, I agree with it more in the sense of what activities our children are taking part in. When I was a kid the internet simply wasn’t an option, so of course I (and you) grew up differently than our children will. I also grew up without a TV, so maybe I wouldn’t have had the internet even if it HAD been around 🙂 I completely agree with you re: bullying, etc. Thanks for the excellent analysis on what difference the internet brings to children today.

    Kate

  3. Hi Kate

    I really like what danah boyd (http://www.danah.org/) has to say about youth and social networking.

    Basically – danah says that as adults, who never had to experience the net as a social networking environment when we were teenages that the best thing we can do is ‘join in’ and then start conversations with young people about how and why they are using these sites, and help them raise awareness of their digital foot prints.

    You’re already there by blogging and Twittering etc. Now it’s about having the conversations with your young students about their experiences (which you probably already have …)

    If you ever get the chance to see danah present – I highly recommend it.

    And in the meantime, you can follow her in Twitter (http://twitter.com/zephoria) or via her blog (http://www.zephoria.org/thoughts/)

    Allison Miller
    Adelaide, South Australia
    http://twitter.com/theother66

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