you used to call me on my cellphone

In today’s post I am going to be focusing on my thoughts from Michael Wesch’s speech, reflecting on the changed world in terms of technology, and sharing how I can educate my students in this ever changing world of technology.

Even though the video “An Anthropological Introduction to Youtube” is a bit dated, I still found it really interesting! The one part that really stuck out for me was when Michael Wesch explained how quick and easy it is for things to spread on the internet.

A visual that showed me how things travel on the internet

After my #EDTC session last night, I started thinking about how technology has changed throughout my own life. Here are few memories with technology  that I hold:

  • When I was younger, I remember play CD-ROM games on my big old computer. Now most of the games people play are on smart phones and tablets (something that pretty much everyone seems to have nowadays..)
  • When I was about seven years old, I started learning what a cellphone is. I remember driving with my mom one day and she showed me her cellphone (which was about the size of a brick) and I thought it was the coolest thing ever.
  • I got my first cellphone when I was in grade 7 ( a white flip phone that used a T9 keyboard). At this time, I had a package that only let me send 50 texts a month ( emergencies only). When I reached grade 9, my package got upgraded to 100 texts a month. Towards the end of grade 9, I got an unlimited texting package and I seriously thought I was the coolest thing EVER! In grade 10, I got my first ever iPhone (another big deal), an iPhone 3!! it was super clunky and huge but I still thought it was awesome. This evolution is so crazy to think of for me as today having a smartphone is totally the norm and pretty much everyone ( including children…) are hooked onto these flatscreen gadgets. 
  • BlockBuster: Going to BlockBuster was one of my FAVOURITE memories as a child. Going to the store, spending forever picking out just the right movie, and then spending almost as long picking out your treats in the check out line. The process of picking out a movie took so long that by the time I actually got home to start watching the movie, I’d be asleep about half way through! So much different  than today where I can find pretty much any movie online or on Netflix and the click on a button! 
  • Limewire: talking about this in our #EDTC300 class last night brought up so many memories! I remember spending hours on lime wire downloading music. It took forever, gave my computer countless viruses and by the time I had my song downloaded, it was usually a low quality version. I remember when Limewire was coming to an end, I actually felt scared.. thinking ” how am I going to get music now?!” If only I could go back in time and tell my 12 year old self that in a few years you’d be able to have an app called Apple music where you’d have access to good quality music for only 3 dollars a month!! 
  • MSN: As I mentioned in class the other night, I LIVED for MSN. I remember coming home from school and rushing to the computer to log onto MSN to chat with my friends ( that I literally just spent all day at school with). Now if I want to get ahold of my friends, they are only a text or phone call away! 

Thinking about all of these things has made me realize that more than ever, we are living in a world of technology. We are even seeing children with their own iPads, phones, social media accounts,tablets, etc. Bedtime stories are getting swapped out for screen time. Technology is ALL around us.

There are two things I believe I can do as an educator to support my students and help them navigate this complex world of technology.

  1. How to be good Digital Citizens 

Teaching children how to be good Digital Citizens is something that is very important to me. In #EDTC300 and in Michael Wesch’s video, we learned that things can spread rapidly over the internet and sometimes this may not be a good thing ( mean messages, screenshots, sexting, embarrassing photos, etc). We as teachers need to be educating our students on ways to be a good digital citizen and how we can leave a positive digital footprint.

Students of all ages can learn to be good digital citizens. In the younger grades, I have started simple by going over how we carry technology ( two hands on the tablets please!!), talking about stranger danger, and never providing your full name and address online. In older grades, teaching students how to be good digital citizens is so important as it reaches topics of stealing, how people see you on the internet ( employment), sexting, sending pictures, cyber bullying, etc.

2.Teaching Students to unplug 

As I have mentioned, technology is all around us in everything we do. I think sometimes we forget the importance of unplugging and detaching ourselves from the hustle and bustle of technology. In teaching students to be good digital citizens, we can also teach them how to unplug. For example, I have seen many teachers use technology tubs where students place their phones for the day as a way of staying focused and unplugging.

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2 thoughts on “you used to call me on my cellphone

Add yours

  1. I love all of the progressions you have outlined from your cellphone history and updates to the old phenomenon of blockbuster (oh how I miss it). I actually did not get my first cellphone until I entered university. So Ive always had an iPhone nut I can remember my dad have a really clunky old phone with an antenna! Crazy how things have changed. The video you watched was really influential in outlining the benefits of technology in connecting human relationships, but also the precautions you need to take in conjunction with it. It is scary out there!

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  2. I think it is important to understand how having their devices is important to students. The technology tub thing is great (I have something similar in my classroom when we aren’t using tech), but I find parents are upset when they can’t reach their kids that second and then the kids get anxiety.
    I’m a fan of unplugging or taking a digital sabbath once a weekish, but I feel like this type of thing needs to be a societal move more than just teachers pushing for being unplugged.
    I enjoyed seeing the tech progression! I remember playing Oregon Trail on a computer that weighed more than I do now (I do believe you can play it on Archive.org)

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