When organizing a panel for our February 9th KCS Encouraging Dialogue Speakers Series, our committee kept hearing from families that they would like this year’s panel to address issues around social media and our children.
To start our search for speakers, we called KCS alumna Marianne B ‘01., whose work is with the Digital Media Zone (DMZ) at Ryerson University. Marianne’s expertise helped guide us in the right direction, and this year’s panel is a result of her leadership.
In our initial conference call, Marianne said something that really resonated with our group. I’m paraphrasing now, but she said, “When I was in grade 5 at KCS, at the end of the day I went home, played with my toys, ate dinner, did my homework, maybe did some extra-curricular activities or spoke on the phone, and then went to bed. I didn’t have a phone connected to the Internet, and I didn’t have a laptop or iPad in my room.” And this was only a little over a ten years ago.
A short pause to think about how things have changed, and will continue to change for our children, leaves one amazed.
Marianne and her parents did not have to deal with cellphones, texting, Facebook’s Likes and Dislikes, Snapchat, Twitter, Instagram or cyberbullying. Although we might not have appreciated it at the time, I’m sure a number of today’s parents would like to see a return to just having their children play with their toys after school. But that’s not going to happen. For today’s parents and their children the ‘online world’ is a big part of their everyday lives. Given this, how can we help our children navigate their digital experiences and keep them safe online?
We are confident our Encouraging Dialogue panel will help families address this important question. We look forward to seeing you at “Keeping Our Kids Safe Online” on Tuesday, February 9, 2016 at 7:00 p.m.
Head of School