It’s that time of year again when parents (and kids) are either counting down the days until school begins, or feeling a sense of overwhelming worry that the summer hasn’t lasted long enough. Admittedly, I’m in the latter category. However, our family has begun to prepare for the new school year.
With the summer upon us, a lot of families will have recently spent time celebrating the end of the school year – and in some cases there were also graduation celebrations!
Being able to see our kids enjoy these special moments seems particularly poignant given how difficult, and at times isolating, the last few years have been for these students and families.
Technology has changed and often improved the way we work, live, shop and play, but it can feel overwhelming at times. I think I’m at the age where new technology feels like too much and I hate change and I don’t want to learn something new. This is why I’m still not really using TikTok I guess.
Written by Dr. Samantha McAleese
Here at MediaSmarts, we’ve just wrapped up another research project called Reporting Platforms: Young Canadians Evaluate Efforts to Counter Disinformation. This project created space for youth from across Canada to examine and assess reporting processes on popular social media apps (like Instagram, TikTok, Twitter, and YouTube). We wanted to learn more about how young people feel about current efforts to counter misinformation and disinformation and what solutions they might have to address this particular online harm. To do this, we facilitated three focus groups with 36 participants ages 16 to 29, talked to them about how often they see misinformation and disinformation online and what they do about it, and asked them to comment on whether they trust platforms to keep them safe and informed while scrolling and sharing.
Students and educators are already having to deal with artificial intelligence (AI) and its implications on schoolwork, assignments and lessons. When writing an essay, or when completing a school project, generative AI tools like ChatGPT can maybe speed up the results, save time and craft the correct response. Is that a good thing or are we causing more issues for our futures?
I have been blogging for over 14 years, freelance writing for almost as long, and on social media for the same amount of time. It’s become my normal to take photos for sharing later (I rarely share ‘in the moment’) or check the news on a social media website before traditional news outlets online. I actively use my phone to stay connected with family and friends, for my job, and as a camera.
When my kids saw the TikTok app icon on my phone, both of them had the same reaction: “WHAT? Why are you on TikTok?” While I thought it was because they wanted to tell me I was too old for the app, it was more that they really didn’t understand the appeal since they aren’t current users (for now).
Recently, my youngest got a new phone that has data and the ability to text anyone. We’ve been texting with my eldest for some time now too. But after years of communicating this way, it finally happened: We, the parents, were invited into a family group chat.
‘Tis the season for festive viewing. At least in our home it is as we plan to celebrate Christmas and that means a lot of holiday movies and shows to watch! Yes, even as the kids have gotten older, this is one tradition that no one outgrows, at least in our home.