At first I thought this was going to be an article about how this School Board of Ed was going to look at ways to integrate Twitter into the curriculum. The first couple of paragraphs look like that. I was very disturbed.
What a horrible idea.
First off, when was the last time anything good happened because of Twitter? I think there are a few Middle Eastern rulers and former rulers that would have something to say about the danger that Twitter poses. Look, we have to realize that China, one of the largest, most populous countries in the world, doesn’t even use Twitter! Think about that! There’s something like a hundred billion Chinese people and none of them tweet! You don’t hear anything bad coming out of China; just great gymnasts, amazing and inexpensive technology, and good food. Right? Am I right? So, when I read further that the Board was actually going to craft policy to keep teachers from interacting with students on Twitter I was very relieved.
This is a step in the right direction.
But, I think we have to take it further. I think it’s great that our Educational leaders are following in the footsteps of a demonstrably great country. For example, look around you. I bet that most of the stuff within reach was made in China. Go ahead, look at it. I’m right, aren’t I? Can a country that has such a huge capacity to produce so many goods and consumables be wrong? Also, China isn’t having terrorists attack them. China isn’t involved in three different wars and it sure isn’t nosing around in Japan’s business right now while they try to recover from disaster. China knows how to mind it’s own business. It doesn’t even get involved with other countries. So, if China bans social networks, don’t you think we should too?
Social networks are dangerous. Proof? Well, the article cites a very clear example where a teacher was convicted of molesting a student. He was sending messages to many students through Facebook, another great evil descending on the world. Obviously, you can’t have teachers messaging students through any social networks! Let’s just call a fact a fact. How else would this teacher have gotten the opportunity to molest a student if he couldn’t message them through Facebook? It seems like every time some teacher gets caught acting inappropriately with students there was some kind of digital messaging going on. Obviously the only safe contact between a teacher and student is face to face. The internet is far too tempting and dangerous; it is like the One Ring in the Lord of the Rings. The One Ring had great power and potential in the hands of its wielder, but it was evil. It bent even good people to its will and twisted them until they committed heinous and treacherous acts. That’s what the internet does with its smut and porn. Any decent communication has potential to fly off the rails and get nasty in digital form. If a teacher wants to speak with a student they should only do it in real life, analog style.
It’s the only safe thing to do.
Further, interacting with students via Facebook or Twitter means that teachers will possibly see the horrible things kids do online. You didn’t know about that? Well, consider yourself lucky. It used to be that if a student wanted to say something filthy to another student they had to pass it across the class like prisoners passing illicit drugs from one cell to another (I saw that in a movie!). This way a teacher had the opportunity to intercept the message and punish them. But, nowadays, students can text each other, instant message, or email. Well, students don’t use email. But, you know what I mean. Those digital messages go floating away and there’s no way to use them to punish the offenders. We can’t have that. Students need discipline and they need to write on paper like we always have. If they are going to write disgusting things to each other they will use ink, just like I did. That is not to say that I wrote disgusting things to anyone because I didn’t. Moving on.
We can’t have teachers interacting with students on social networks. It would be better to just let the parents deal with it. Let the parents catch kids sexting (I heard about this on the news – it’s where kids combine sex and texting, which I can’t really imagine but, then, I’m not as young as I used to be.). Parents give kids the birds and the bees talk so we should let them give the turds and the tweets talk, too. Students are much more apt to listen to their parents in this matter, as they always have.
I actually heard someone suggest that teachers could teach students safe and appropriate ways to use social networks. Laugh out loud! Okay, after I finished administering the Heimlich maneuver on myself with the corner of the table and got that bit of bagel out of my throat, I had to just laugh. Seriously? You think a teacher can figure out how to use Twitter or Facebook in an appropriate manner, first of all, and then teach it to kids, second of all? It’s just silly. We all know that students barely listen to teachers on regular stuff. But, can you see kids listening to us old people on how to tweet?
And, besides all that, who is going to teach the teachers to use Twitter? What good would it do? Do we really want teachers all over Twittter, tweeting about, “Oh, my goodness, there’s so many tests to grade!” or, “I’m sorry but you spell it ‘your’ not UR.” or, “So excited to introduce photosynthesis to 3rd period!”
Ugh. It’s sickening. Nobody wants to see all that. We all know that the only reason to use Twitter is to tweet inane nonsense about what you’re doing now. Or, tweeting inappropriately with students.
And that’s the danger of the tweet.