I was teaching a group of private students a few days ago – students who were weak in certain areas and needed “nurturing” to bring them to the standard demanded. During one of the lessons, the topic of Facebook Likes came up. Chat started asking Rosemary how many “likes” her last profile picture got, and they started teasing each other it, and stuff like that – you know.
Facebook is a real time drainer. I wouldn’t say just time: it drains you of mental and physical energy as well – and staring at the phone or computer screens for long hours doesn’t have a positive effect on the eyes either.
So it’s a bit of a surprise that anyone would tell anyone “use the internet more.” But that’s exactly what I told my students: use the internet more.
But wisely. Use it to your advantage. I told them the story of how, about 50 years ago, when my dad graduated from high school with 7 CXC subjects – grades 1 – 3 – that was a big thing. Very few students ranked at this level. He was considered a “very educated man.”
But fast forward 40 years later and a lot has changed. We’re reading almost every year of students rolling out with 20 grade ones, 19 grade ones and even 26 grade ones! And these statistics keep getting better. What has impacted the lives of students so positively to bring about these changes. Well, a lot of things, and a lot of factors. But one of them definitely is the internet. The superhighways of information has brought the world of information to the fingertips of so many students. And it is the ones who have mastered “search” who will make the best of it. It is the ones who understand how to harness the power of the internet to improve their education who will succeed the most.
Sometimes, when my students asked them to help with a topic, I say, “I’ll have to look that up on the internet for you.” And on the same note, I always encourage students to look “stuff” on the internet with consistent regularity.
So students, use the internet more – but use it wisely; don’t just use it for Facebook Likes. Use it for research and your education.