Bridge of Northeast Florida - Teaching and Reaching:
Educating parents empowers them with tools to help them
monitor their child’s Internet and cell phone access of digital
The workshop "Teen Social Networking"
The aim was to empower and inform parents of what is going
on in regards to teen sexting, texting, cyber bullying,
on the Internet with Myspace, Facebook, Tag, etc.
Empowerment and Value:
The empowerment of technology should be respected and
recognized as a potential educational and economic equalizer.
The digital environment does not recognize gender, nationality,
nor cultural heritage. Digital devices provide opportunities for
original thought and expression.
These thoughts and expressions can be shared in
Blogs, Wikis, on Twitter, Youtube, Nings, LinkedIn,
and on Blog Talk Radio channels on the Internet.
These are just a few of the sites available for collaboration,
social gatherings and networking. Parents are ignorant
and understandably so because of the changes that occur
and the time limit they have in working and managing a family.
Open Doors:
Technology opens doors for academic collaboration, social
networking, multimedia creativity and entrepreneurial
commonality for the small business owner. The growing exchange
of information has become more valuable than traditional currency because
information exchange leads to opportunities in business markets
not previously accessible.
These opportunities allow for diversification and the potential
to reach a broader and diversified customer base. Doors are open
and opportunities abound to digitally walk into markets usually
inaccessible because of geographic location and cultural nuances.
Educators have the capability to dynamically and interactively
create virtual worlds that embrace the learning styles of students.
Creating exciting and fun adventures in learning and exchange of
Social Networks:
The spectrum of social networking embraces and encourages
mass communication, collaborative opportunities and at times
unexpected exchanges. Engaging in these digital interactions,
participants are breaking cycles of social isolation and decreasing
levels of illiteracy because information must be "Read", information
on the screen is interpreted and comprehended.
Social interaction allows users to synthesis and analyze information
which promotes higher order thinking and elements of creativity in
a dynamic multimedia environment. SN provides avenues to the
creativity of the user. Users instantly become artists linguistically
manipulation and creativity of language. The development of poetic
ingenuity, spoken word expression, ministry and other elements that allow
for the change in textual development that allows for the exchange
of ideologies.
SN allows for unlimited opportunities of expression, the use of audio
and video can be incorporated to create a cornucopia of dynamic
and interactive information. The United States is envied by the
world because our constitution allows for freedom of speech.
This freedom does at time creates controversy, but with freedom
comes the responsibility of creators to be morally and ethically
responsible for their content. Young people must learn the value
of worthwhile content that is contributory not divisive or destructive.
Participating in social networks brings value to thinking outside
the box. This can be witnessed in online environments that are
becoming too numerous to name. Digital video, streaming audio
transcends the linear communication style of just email
(electronic mail), incorporation of these tools expands the
interactivity for creators for digital content.
Electronic mail is not dead; it is passing through a transformational
and mutative state. The connectivity that IM has shown that email lacks
personality, interactivity and the ability to express emotion. Those
involved in business and on the educational platform on any scale
still rely on email as the primary communicative platform.
The creation of email applications has
actually expanded the digital platform for communication;
Google Wave, Google Buzz, Hotmail, Gmail, Yahoo mail and
others are allowing for not just textual communication but encourages
merging with IM (instant messaging) and additional interactive
tools (apps). Users new to email should start with simplistic email
applications, building from a simple platform to one of
more interactive in communicative capability.
The more knowledgeable user to email looks for a platform that
integrates with multiple web based platforms. The ability to merge
with social media applications that allow for personalized audio and
video messaging. Creating a dynamic presentational platform, not a
static or one dimensional communicative process.
Businesses at this point in time does not support a business solution
to IM (Instant Messaging) or SN (Social Network). Education is
slowly finding ways to implement these new tools because students
are already using them and teachers must be able to engage the
learner on multiple levels of interactivity .
In order for this generation (16 and up) to be employable in this
digital age it will require young people to have technology skills
beyond the social networking access. Those seeking employment
must first manipulate electronic kiosk systems entering the
appropriate information. Young adults must understand that
employers are seeking applicants already competent and confident
in their abilities and are "teachable" to new productivity and
communicative tools. Young adults must be literally capable
to read with comprehension and form structurally sound and
intelligent sentences. In this age of diversification and
global corporate structures that opportunity to interact with other
cultures and ethnic groups is growing. If our young people are not
confident and capable they will not reap the rewards of global
corporate leadership and revenue (monetary) success.
Manual Labor:
The labor jobs that supported families in the past are no longer
in existence. Governmental housing, factory employment,
skilled labor positions that use to be generational in our
auto industry, defense contracting, agricultural (farming),
and even the clothing industry (seamstresses and tailors)
are gone or forever changed with the incorporation of technology.
To the chagrin of workers here in the U.S these jobs are
performed overseas by child laborers or automatons (robots).
The new jobs are technical in nature. Working from a computer
terminal, workstation or laptop. The management of data,
interpretation and manipulation of information (IT, MIS) and
programming. There are limitless career options in designing
and marketing multimedia content, digital entertainment, data
warehousing, Ecommerce, corporate financing, identity security,
and entrepreneurial opportunities. There are doors of collaboration,
and incorporation opening when technology is managed effectively.
Those at a electronic/digital disadvantage are in a digital divide.
The digital divide is not just based on a color, ethnic or cultural
lines it is the result of the value placed on technology.
Libraries do provide free access, but with budget cuts they to will
negatively be affected. This limiting of access to digital content
has detrimental effects on those seeking
employment and educational accessibility and equality.
To paraphrase Booker T. Washington, "young people need to make
themselves of indispensable value if they are going to compete
in business, technology, education, ministry and sciences. To
compete means to validate to society that their presence and
participation is necessary and they will bring value and are
beneficial to society.
Technology allows for people to create for themselves value
and purpose, to be recognized as contributing and making a positive