YouTube has turned into the largest online video sharing platform in the world. YouTube enables easy and fast video uploading and sharing. This allows for a large variety of content to be made easily available to the public. Teachers have zeroed in on YouTube as a great source to find educational content for students and promote digital citizenship. Like any widely used internet source though, it can often be abused.
The following Remind conversation highlights some of the many advantages and disadvantages of YouTube as an educational resource. This conversation takes place in regards to a fictional grade eight social studies classroom. Ms. Glascock (me) has assigned students to find current event topics to watch and discuss briefly during the beginning of class. Two parents, Jocelyn and Kaitlyn have learned about the assignment from their kids and have some concerns about the YouTube.
Both parents are expressing a concern for the use of YouTube in the classroom. The believe that their children have way too much screen time already and they don’t need anymore while they are at school. They are also very concerned with the current challenge that is all over the internet known as the Momo challenge. This challenge instructs the viewer to share the post in a certain amount of time or else they will die. It also gives instructions on how to self harm and commit suicide. Both of these arguments are true and are valid reasons why students should not be allowed on YouTube at school, but there are many benefits of it if it is used properly.
The teacher is using YouTube as a way to engage her students with current events. They are given the assignment and must critically search through YouTube to find valid, concrete sources. This task not only promotes critical thinking, but it also contributes to their digital citizenship. Digital citizenship is how you interact with the internet and other users on the internet.
Through this assignment, students are interacting with both political and social current events that affect them in one way or another. They are then able to connect with other people who are also interested or affected by these current events and discuss and ask questions. This builds a good relationship with technology and encourages students to use the internet for good and not in a way that might get them into trouble.
Remind is a free text messaging App, aimed at teachers, students, and parents. It allows for fast and easy communication, while keeping personal information such as phone numbers private.
The Momo Challenge uses a very spooky photo of a chinese based character to coax people on multiple different internet platforms, including YouTube into acts violence and self harm. Scarier yet, much of the Momo content is targeted at children. Click the link to learn more about the Momo Challenge.
The Distraction free YouTube extension allows you to remove distractions in the form of ads on YouTube, as well as inappropriate content such as the Momo Challenge.
Twitter was also used in gaining valuable opinions of YouTube in the classroom from fellow educators, and education students. Thanks too everyone who participated!
YouTube was also used in the making of this blog post, for searching up information such as digital citizenship, and the Momo Challenge. This proves how useful it really can be in education!