The Big Lean Mean Internet Machine
The internet has become this gigantic abyss of non-stop information and content that has somehow brought humans worldwide together like non-other. Watching Wesch’s video made that more apparent as he states, “The web isn’t just about information, it is also about linking people”. It is a place for individuals of all kinds, from all different cultures, races, religions, sexuality, genders, etc. to find likeminded people to share and collaborate. Wesch focuses a lot on the impact and growth of Youtube but today Instagram, Snapchat, Tik Tok, Twitter and Pinterest are all platforms that have just as much action all over the world. The feeling of being able to connect with someone you never met but know so much about is a weird one.
I started watching youtube around 12 years old which is when a lot of people began making youtube their career. There were and still are so many genres, from beauty guru and booktuber to lifestyle vlogger and education. I watched as so many of these YouTubers grew from 500 subscribers to millions of subscribers. Watching them go through puberty, graduation, adulthood, parenthood felt like I truly knew them but I don’t. I only know what they want to portray themselves as. Which as a young girl I didn’t realize and thought they were living this incredible life with no bad days. This is so incredibly dangerous for young teens to think as it creates unrealistic expectations and can be very detrimental to mental health as they succumb to the monster that is comparison.
For my future classroom, this then means that my classroom will be a safe environment for students to feel comfortable having a bad day and to not feel compared and/or judged. It will be an open space where students are aware of the unrealistic expectations we see on all social media platforms. Students need to be aware of not only the cons though as there are many pros to social media. Adults are always putting down social media even though they are just as active as younger generations. This is not an effective way to educate students because without knowing it, you are creating a wall between you and the student where they are going to start hiding things which may lead to negative behaviour.
Technology, the internet and social media are not going anywhere anytime and are truly just going to become a larger more apparent thing in our lives than it already is. Accepting tech and incorporating the educational purposes of it in our classroom will only benefit our students when it comes to understanding a positive digital citizenship. I can’t wait to gain more experience and resources as I grow as a teacher. Honestly, when thinking of incorporating tech into my classroom it seems like a very daunting task but with this edtc 300 family I feel like I have all the support a gal needs.
Marissa Sweatland wrote a great article for Odyssey that outlines the how social media gives us unrealistic expectations, you can find it here.