Education – Investing in our Future – Social Media Training
Thanks for joining me for this third installment of Education – Investing in our Future. You can catch up by reading the Series Introduction and Curriculum Development posts. This post will focus on one of our recent brainstorms – educating our kids on the proper use of social media!
We’ve all read blog posts bemoaning the alarming content that our kids are willing to share in the social stream. Perhaps our own kids are shocking us with their indiscretion regarding what is appropriate to share to the public. We still bear a responsibility to teach our own kids about reasonable boundaries of disclosure, but what if we could run 1-2 hour seminars in the middle school and high school classrooms? Of course, we also need to point out the benefits of using social media to begin crafting a personal brand for future employers and colleges to review.
Here are some of the highlights we are considering. Due to the limited amount of time in a 1-2 hour presentation, we would only broach these topics with a focus on the most common social media platforms. I hope you can benefit from these suggestions as well as offer up new ideas in the spirit of crowd-sourcing to best equip our students:
- Privacy Settings
Are you astonished at what K12 kids are sharing via social media? This section of the presentation would focus on the privacy settings for both YouTube and Facebook. Although many students will continue to flaunt their content to the largest audiences possible, we would explain the differences between Friends and “Friends of Friends”, Wall-to-Wall communications, Messages and Lists. On YouTube, we would discuss public/private URLs, and the consideration of either disabling all comments or moderating comments to keep other users from adding inappropriate content to your channel.
With the discussion of Wall-to-Wall communication and private messages, we need to outline the boundaries of acceptable behavior when it involves bullying. Cyber-bullying is even more gutless than physical bullying, yet the abuse continues to escalate. We will provide statistics and case studies to illustrate the effects of this terrible behavior.
- Appropriate Content and Disclosure
The Internet.Never.Forgets. Posting graphic photos, prejudicial rants and diatribes about parents, teachers, employers and fellow students will follow you forever! Again, we can provide case studies to show how users were not selected for jobs or college placement as well as examples of arrests and lost child custody cases due to publishing inappropriate content.
- LinkedIn Profiles
Did I mention that one day I forbade my recently graduated high school senior from going out on a Friday night until she started her LinkedIn profile? As both a professional and an employer, I believe in the power of LinkedIn, professional networking and personal branding. We are much more likely to find employees via LinkedIn connections, group memberships and profile reviews than from any resume or generic job board profile. We are no longer constrained to a “References upon Request” line at the bottom of our resumes; instead, we can proactively solicit recommendations from employers, instructors and coaches. If students are in a competitive scenario for job placement or college acceptance, a well-crafted LinkedIn profile could be the difference maker! This section of the social media training program will focus on what constitutes a 100% complete LinkedIn profile including keywords, Honors & Activities, Interests, Recommendations and Job History.
- Blogs and other Social Profiles
This topic is even more advanced than a detailed LinkedIn discussion. However, some students may benefit from additional knowledge regarding platforms they can use to promote their personal brands to employers and colleges. We can briefly touch upon topics like YouTube channels, Facebook Fan Pages, Pinterest Boards and blogging platforms. This section could also briefly discuss content creation, content curation and online influence.
- Digital Media Careers
A discussion around content creation and curation provides a great transition into talking about Digital Media Careers. High-tech is not constrained to careers like software development, testing, project management and network engineering. We can complete our social media training sessions with the highlights regarding digital media careers that include social media strategy, social media marketing and even content creation via blogging. Let’s get these kids excited about the wide world of technology and careers available to them!
Finally Viveka VonRosen had an outstanding idea when we were discussing social media training ideas for students – a live TweetChat! We could introduce students to the power of TweetChats for education and sharing ideas. Think of how many high school juniors and seniors, and even college students, would benefit from chats like #CollegeCash! I will post more about this topic as we develop the concept, but Viveka has already recommended the use of #LinkedInKids for the chat hashtag.
What would you add to this list? More importantly, would you support your own children attending this type of onsite, in-class presentation? I look forward to your comments!