Tuesday, January 29, 2008

[TIPS] STOP! You can't use Google Maps! What if...

I just heard this story and I'm hoping that by the telling it will lower my blood pressure a bit.

A group of middle school teachers got together to create a cross curricular lesson. Each one would appoint a scribe for the day who would post information to a google map. The basis was that kids were going to "Walk to California" for wellness. They would do laps around the track, adding up the miles they walked and then plotting it on a google map where they stopped at each day. Other areas of the curriculum were involved, as well. Geography. Social Studies. Foreign language. It was going to be all the 6th, 7th and 8th graders building this project. Teachers were primed and ready to go.

In steps the tech director who says, "What if someone posts something inappropriate on there - and other kids see it? It's on YOUR web page!"

Full stop! End of idea.

A couple teachers wanted to go ahead with it, offering some suggestions on how to deal with that possibility. No go. It died a quick death.

By the way, that person who raised this fear factor is NOT an educator and never WAS.

Did you hear me screaming?


.mrsdurff said...

Why is fear so paralyzing? How do we deal with it? What is our response (when our blood pressure returns to normal that is)?

Jimbo Lamb said...

I wonder how the tech director would respond to this question: "What if one of these kids hears something inappropriate from another kid while in school? It's said in YOUR school!" Maybe the tech director would just like to turn off access to the internet. Problem solved!

Regardless of what we do as teachers, parents, coaches, students, administrators, etc., there will be inappropriate things that surface in school. You can't stop that. It will just happen. That's why we have rules and consequences. If someone posts something inappropriate (or presents it in another way), we have to act on it and provide an appropriate consequence.