District To Embrace Social Media

Merryview-ISD approves revolutionary social media curriculum

Big image
Many students viewed the news as strange but exciting, as Merryview-ISD announced on Thursday that the district would begin a program to teach social media to elementary school students. The course will be replacing all school curriculum for the 5th and 6th grades, and is designed to give pre-teenagers the introduction to and proper use of social media sites. The program will first be used at Lincoln elementery shool, and already has teachers excited. Former math teacher Mr. Smith pointed out its necessity; "The social media curriculum is a great turn-around. Usually we have to deal with unexcited kids who are burdened by school work and ultimately resolve to using their phones and social media. By teaching social media, we not only teach them interactive skills, but we pass on lessons on how to deal with the real world they live in."

In an age where internet interaction dominates, the district decided it would embrace the change and educate children on what is really important. Lincoln elementary will introduce children to Facebook as a forum for interacting with close friends and family, Twitter where they can practice writing and creative expression, and Instagram and Snapchat where they can record actual events of their lives as opposed to the past extraneous method of experiencing those moments. These courses also math, history, and science classes, and embrace the possibility that everyone can be socially active, but not everyone can be a historian, mathematician, or scientist.

The course has not come without criticism. Critics have pointed out that social media is not a useful topic and the district should stick to teaching current school courses which better educate the students and will help in their future careers.

Responding to that criticism, Mr. Smith expanded on his point for the necessity of social media lessons, "Look, there is no point in teaching school courses anymore. Schools previously told us to teach our students mostly topics they would never use again while we ignored the ones they would use daily. It's not like students will use 3x-5 = y and the concept of variables to file their taxes. I tell you, many other teachers have criticized it, but there is no other alternatives to teach students things they will use daily, so this new method is perfect."

Superintendent Meredith Johnson was particular excited for the new opportunities of experiencing the world that these young people could have. "With social media, students can learn more and see what their neighbors and friends are doing, or even to spend hours to view how productive or not their favorite pop celebrity is being. Our goal is also to touch on specifically how to use social media - for example, you can have round-table like discussions through, "group-chats," or you can eliminate the burden of face-face contact or even phone calls through the use of the DM (Direct Messenger). The use of social media will reportedly make all students more interactive, and will teach them life lessons on how to deal with drama from posts on one's timelines, or how they can simply block someone they don't want to rationally settle a dispute with.

Social media courses pass on real interactive lessons, and, the kids actually pay attention in class for once. With a world with increasing internet interaction, the district is just trying to make sure that every future teenager is equipped with the skills to make the most out of their increasingly changing world.

Maldini Sakah