5 Steps to Prepare Students for a World in Which Online Lies is a Major Problem
For most, school is the only time where you experience the different perspectives of differing classes of people. This can range from highly influential or infamous elite to those watching a straight path or all the way down to the kids leaving school each day. The main purpose of this is for teachers to educate about certain media. But, even as public schools in America ban the use of the word “fake”, it has recently been happening in those who teach, too.
We just have to look at the topic of media literacy, which has grown more and more important since Donald Trump’s presidency. Recently, someone came up with the idea that teachers who wouldn’t teach the proper way of using social media would be at risk for being fired. After all, “fake news” and “stories not true” are just as much of a danger to young people as the threats that social media poses to most of society.
Whether you are an educator or not, you have likely been exposed to so many fake stories that have gotten so much hype, that it is almost easier to tell a flower off and decide to pay no attention to it than to know how to avoid taking too much in. But there are steps you can take to make sure your student is all ready for the current situations and news that may hit the press in the very near future. Here are five ways you can prepare them for a world in which online lies is a major problem.
Even though Facebook gets the most play, the truth is that people are likely to be more impulsive on their mobile device than anything else. Fortunately, if your students can remember to take a few minutes to sit down, they can actually get an idea of what the media in their area is doing. So, you can set your students up with a real world example in a physical location, like at a museum or school.
Figure out what aspects are correct and which are not
Even though you can find out accurate news by browsing Facebook, you can go much further when it comes to those posts that have gone viral. In fact, there is usually a path between the good news and the fact that it might not be true or even maybe even be a hoax. You can research what these threads have done and pinpoint those that pose an immediate threat to your students.
Review historical news
It’s a wise idea to keep up with current affairs as you do research for your own curriculum. One good starting point is to watch YouTube videos for any news that may be relevant to the class. If there are any videos that you think your students might notice they’ve seen before, you might want to contact the author of these videos to look up the information.
Keep more up to date
Most teachers are always searching for the most up-to-date and reliable information regarding a given topic. Every school has its own curriculum, and to stay updated and correct, you need to make sure your students learn about that. They need to know the difference between free media and paid media, what information is real and what they should not trust. This can be easy to do by keeping a record of past information and either keeping a list of outlets your students have used on their campus or checking in with professors who teach these topics.
Realize facts are up for debate
Is social media a good or bad thing? This question goes beyond media and spans social media users themselves. There is absolutely no way to adequately answer that question, but you can check your students’ social media use by paying attention to their presence and whether or not they have engaging discussions going on.
If they seem more obsessed with fake news or pictures of extremely popular people than they do real news, it’s likely that they are more prone to fake news stories than people who aren’t immersed in social media. How does your student respond when asked about the important issues and issues they are facing? Those are the issues your teacher needs to be aware of. You need to use the findings you discover, and address the issues that your students are more interested in.
Know how to use your research and the information you find
The biggest mistake educators can make is to try to do too much with only passing knowledge. Instead, your students must be taught to absorb all of the information available to them, and be able to explain and share their findings. The most effective teachers know how to include the basics with each information lesson in their curriculums. They find a way to teach students the content and then how it makes connections to current situations as well as those from the distant past. This will help them get the most out of their time and open their minds to new ideas, while still keeping the basics intact.