On May 24th, I participated in my ordinary zoom conference with my #edtc300 class. However, this class we had a guest lecturer talk about the 'selfie generation' and the emerging culture of technology. This guest lecturer was none other than University of Regina professor, Dr. Alec Couros. I had never taken a class or experienced a lecture from Alec before and needless to say I was very engaged and impressed.
When beginning this #edtc300 class and even more into this lecture, I always assumed I knew a lot about technology. I feel as though being in my early twenties that I grew up with technology as it became more advanced. I went from researching using encyclopedias to now literally googling everything on my phone in seconds. So in class when Alec reminded us about the dangers of putting stuff on the web and the internet in general, it made me take a step back. I use the internet and social media in general way more than I'd like to admit to, so I have become so accustomed to it that I forget it can be a scary place.
As an adult I feel as though I can be aware of certain dangers such as different spam and catfishing, but when children and teens are on the internet they may not understand this. Teaching about the internet and digital citizenship safety is extremely important to start at an early age as most children encounter and use technology before they start kindergarten. As a future educator, I want to use this technology, but in a safe way. Some sites I found very useful to do this are:
- Tips for Kids and Parents About Internet Safety
- 10 Things to Teach Your Kids About Internet Safety
- How to Teach Internet Safety to Younger Elementary Students
Along with teaching about being safe on the internet in my future classroom, I am planning on bringing multiple aspects of technology into the learning. There are millions of ways I can bring technology into every aspect. Participation is something we discussed in class and I immediately connected to. I am not normally one to talk in class discussions (shocker I know). But it is common for people to feel stronger when they are behind a screen. This is where different chats come in. Even in a zoom class it is much easier to chat than speak in person. Technology can ease this anxiety that comes with class participation. One option for this can be using Kahoot!. I find that participation and technology can be a huge positive in a future class. Another positive I find with technology in the class is to connect with students. In Alec's lecture he talked about connecting and building relationships with students through aspects such as memes, vines, and youtube videos. It is so important when connecting with students to speak their language through different technology. I had a professor last semester that included memes in the slides and it sparked the whole classes interest. I have seen this work with university students and am very open to including different types of technology in my classroom. Done in the right way I believe technology is a huge positive to the future classroom.
Lastly, I want to talk about something I find spooky on the internet. This is the advertisements everyone views. When you use social media platforms like Facebook, Instagram, Snapchat, and more, the ads you see are not what everyone sees. They are completely dependent on you and your interests. I find that my phone can read my mind. I can think about something and not say it out loud, then all of a sudden I will see advertisements and sponsored posts about it. Or else I will google something or even talk about a certain product or movie, then that's all I will see. Technology is insane. So next time you are on social media, pay attention to the ads you are seeing. It's quite creepy.
If you're interested in learning more - check Alec Couros out on Twitter here