The Good, The Bad, and The Ugly Regarding Social Media

A Goochland Schools Hosted Roundtable for Awareness

  •  How aware are you about the impact social media has on your child? 
  • How aware are you about how to use these tools safely? 
  • Are you interested in knowing more about how your son or daughter is using their cell phone?
When:  April 10, 2014 at 6:30 p.m
Where: Community Room, Reynolds Community College, Goochland Campus. We’ll cover this and more in a roundtable event with guests that includes GCPS teachers, principals, the Goochland Sheriff’s Office, and GCPS students. This event is free with light refreshments served.  

Edmodo Explosion!

This year we’ve seen an explosion in the use of Edmodo throughout our elementary schools!  I love the way I see teachers using it to engage students in learning.  In Mrs. Fergueson’s class at Randolph Elementary she ignites conversations with students by posting open-ended questions. She often posts questions that encourage her students to reflect on their learning.  Her students review and discuss what they have learned in class.  In Ms. Thompson’s third grade class at Byrd students record themselves reading, and post their recordings to Edmodo.  It is a great way for students to practice fluency, and to hear themselves reading.  They also have the opportunity to hear the other fantastic readers in the class.


This month our district kicked off a county wide reading initiative called One District, One Book.  Students, teachers, and staff members are all reading Stuart Little together.  We created an Edmodo page to add a social element to the project.  Members from all three elementary schools have joined the group.  Students post questions about the book, answer questions posted by teachers and peers, make predictions, and discuss their favorite parts of the book.

Here are some quotes from the page:

“In Stuart Little chapter 6 I think it was funny when the police officer fell into the water.”



“I wish we could read Stuart little every day, even on weekends, and snow days.”



Edward said, “I’m so glad that Stuart got saved buy George!” Another students replied, “If he wasn’t the story would be ruined!”


If you are interested in why we use social media in Goochland County, I encourage you to google phrases such as social media in the classroom or to check out articles such as, The Benefits of Using Social Media in the Classroom.  The benefits of using social media in the classroom are numerous and varied, including increased discussion among students and teachers.  In addition, social media can bring together students separated by geographic barriers – as has happened in our district Edmodo group for the One District, One Book initiative.


If you are apprehensive about students using social media, then we invite you to join us for a discussion with education and community leaders on the topic.  Our original date was canceled due to inclement weather, but we will reschedule asap!

Teens and Technology

Last week we had to cancel our Social Media Roundtable due to inclement weather. That’s not all bad. Now we have an opportunity to make the event even better.

There is an interesting interview with danah boyd about teens and social media going around Twitter today. Why do teens spend so much time interacting on a screen rather than with the people in the same room? Take a look. It makes a lot of sense.

My favorite passage is at the bottom of the page.

The thing for me is it’s less about focusing on the technology and more about focusing holistically on a particular young person and how they’re doing. There are young people out there who are really doing poorly. Use the technology to figure out who’s not doing okay, and figure out ways to intervene. Because most of the reasons they’re not doing okay are classic–different kinds of stress or pressure, different kinds of family abuse. Mental health issues, peer social insecurities. Peer relationship dynamics, which is all the bullying issues. Let’s not get distracted by the technology, and realize that technology is showing us what’s happening in kids’ lives, and use that as an opportunity to make a difference in their lives, as opposed to thinking that if we make the technology go away we can solve problems. Because that is not at all the way this works.