The Innovator

Education, Social Justice, Innovation

Are we addicted to technology?

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This picture shows the ever-changing world of digital technology. Are we paying more attention to technology than the content?  Do we see people on their phone “snap chatting”, “instagraming” and updating their status on Twitter and Facebook, or do we see them enjoying the company they are with? I feel we need to start gearing our work in the classroom to teach students how to use technology without being addicted.

I grew up in a world without smart phones and the need to have a cell phone. I didn’t get my first cell phone until high school and my first computer until college. When I worked with fourth graders, my students brought their iPhones to school. I would receive countless “Instagram” and “Twitter” invitations from them, even though I didn’t have either account. My siblings and I took turns on our old school computer to type our homework in high school and we needed to use books for sources not websites. I just turned twenty-three and I feel that I am behind in technology. While most of my professors are using social media, I am still lost in using Twitter.

Being required to have a blog and update a blog is difficult for me. I am not addicted to technology. When I studied abroad, I didn’t bring a computer or phone. I can live without checking my email or Facebook. Since I don’t check my email constantly, I find myself falling behind. When did our society become so obsessed with digital technology? I am not going to lie, I am upset that we are becoming so dependent on technology. As much as I love the benefits of technology and the positives social media brings, I see the downfall. I feel less personal interaction and I feel as if I don’t even need to be living in Philadelphia to attend Penn if everything I do has to be submitted online. I see people on Facebook posting rants and “selflies” and I see people constantly checking Twitter. I have to be honest and ask why? Why are we doing this? Are we using our time wisely? Do people really care that much?

I would rather live in the spectacular now. I don’t want my students to feel that digital technology is the right way or only way. I feel that it is important to show them how to use it, and use it to gear their interests in topics. I used computer math games for my fourth graders to make math exciting. I, more importantly, want my students to be critical learners. I want them to question everything online and question why they are using technology. In a world that is becoming so dependent on technology, I want them to see the importance of living in the moment. We are missing so much of our life by checking our phones, Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Blogs, email and we are missing a key social aspect. I understand that these mediums teach us appropriate ways to interact with each other, but it is infuriating. Too many people “Facebook message” me. Why can’t you call me? I don’t want to have to check Facebook for anything. I used social media in college to spread awareness about invisible conflicts throughout the world or promote social causes.

Hopefully throughout this semester I will become more open to blogging and Twitter. For now I will look critically at social media today.


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