Being Familiar With Popular/Internet Media

How many of these videos or references are you familiar with? How many do you think the “average” teenager would recognize?

How familiar should we be with the popular media of our children/students? Does it matter? Did it matter when it was mostly television? Should we bother? How should we (e.g., teachers, parents) approach this topic/issue?

Obviously, I don’t have the answers. Would love to hear your thoughts.

8 thoughts on “Being Familiar With Popular/Internet Media

  1. I think a degree of familiarity is important. It would be the same if I traveled to Africa, took no time to learn their culture and attempted to teach them all about the western world without acknowledging and honoring theirs. At the very least have some knowledge to engage in conversations.

  2. I’d forgotten about the dancing guy, and I’m guilty of showing the eepy birds during science class ;-) I think it’s important to be open to seeing/hearing these things. I share with my students (where’s Harry Potter puppet pals?) and they share with me. Goes with what Dean says; after all, what are we doing in their world (school) if we aren’t willing to share cultures?

  3. I knew most of these (I didn’t count them though :p ). I think it’s important to know these. It’s not simply that it’s popular culture. It’s popular culture that is – for the first time in a very long time – actually made by the people.

  4. I agree with Anne that we need to share their culture. I still remember when I grew up I always thought my parents did not do enough to understand the culture of the kids. Being teachers they did not have that connection with the students that some of the other teachers had that made it a priority to understand the kids culture. That is the reason I think it is important to stay connected with the kids. You understand why they do things, why they say things when you stay in touch with their interests. You don’t become their “buddies” but they feel they can trust you if you are not just the teacher standing in front of the class to teach. We are with the students for a big part of the day and have the opportunity to make a difference in their lives. I must admit that they have a very interesting culture and I enjoy being part of it.

  5. I watched the video and recognized someplace between a third and half of the references. I am not going to try and say I recognize these videos because I am in touch with today’s teens. I am going to be quite honest and come out with it – I recognize many of these references because I am an internet geek. There it is out.

  6. I had a student respond to a question about “should teachers be allowed not to use technology.” Her response was “If teachers want to be ancient.” I’m not sure where the line is immersing yourself in popular culture vs being current with it enough so you can engage and be engaged by your students. While I may not know every reference I also try not to be “ancient” as I challenge them with project based learning opportunities using their media.

  7. I think it is VERY important for teachers and parents to try to stay up to date with this stuff, if we want to understand our students/children and “where they are coming from”. I had seen or heard about a good portion of the items shown, however, there was still a lot of new items that I am sure the younger generation would definitely be familiar with.

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