[tweetmeme]Normally, I talk about social media in the context of marketing but I hope you’ll forgive me if I go slightly off topic today. I just read an article in the New York Times called, “Students Speak Up in Class, Silently, Using Social Media.” The story talked about how students, as young as 4th graders, are using backchannel “Twitter-like” programs to comment on class discussions. Teachers think it’s great because shy students can contribute to a “discussion” by typing into their computer keyboards.
Really? This is good?
I’m sorry, but maybe I’m just getting old.
As an introvert, who has learned to be more outgoing as a function of doing business – giving a 60-second elevator speech at a networking meeting, for example – I’m very concerned that this is setting a bad precedent. How are our children going to learn to communicate face to face, if they’re being taught it’s ok to communicate through the computer screen?!?
It’s one thing for college classes to engage in this type of instruction. I don’t have a problem with that. But our youngest students should be encouraged to speak up in class.
We’ve already got an obesity epidemic among children in the United States. If we keep heading down this road, we’re going to end up like the people in the animated film, ‘Wall-E.” And I for one, don’t want to see that happen. How about you?