My executive director and I had an interesting conversation this past week on social media and social skills. We discussed how social media is impacting our children and if that impact is positive or negative.
We also considered how social media will impact how underprivileged children develop currently acceptable social skills. Without the educational tools and exercises will these children be left behind?
I’d like to open up our conversation to you. What are your thoughts on these questions?
NOTE: These questions aren’t intended to be negative toward social media.
In two decades, how will grade school students define communication?
When I was a child I defined communication as writing a letter, phoning a friend, or talking face to face. In middle school, I added ICQ. In high school, I added AIM, email, and online voice chat. In college, I added Facebook. Now I can simply plug into a network of friends, colleagues, and peers whenever and however I want. If that’s how much communication has evolved in two decades, how is it going to evolve going forward?
Who are those people helping make those evolutionary steps? I want to work for them.
How will social media help shape acceptable forms of communication?
Social acceptability is ever changing toward communication. I should preface that with, “if we like it or not.” How though? In philanthropy, will the face to face ask go extinct? Will everyone just solicit digitally? Look how easy it is to share one’s story digitally, why not the ask too?
Will social media hinder students when developing currently acceptable social skills?
For me this is the important question. We know there is already a huge gap in the education that children are receiving across the U.S., but does that gap grow larger when coupled with ineffective ways of educating students on social skills? Will some children be shutout of the game, because they lack currently acceptable social skills?