Dear Sherry, I Changed My Mind

As we are only one month into this course, I am finding myself making huge strides in the way I think of media literacy and digital citizenship in my own personal life. In the first week when we were required to watch Sherry Turkle’s video, “Connected, But Alone?” I found myself becoming excited by everything she was saying and agreeing with almost every point she made. I even debated my viewpoint during our first online class discussion because I felt so passionate about it. But as the weeks went on, and I continued to expand my horizons on media literacy and hear perspectives from others, such as Nathan Jurgenson, I found myself moving towards the other end of the spectrum. I realized that I was beginning to disagree with many of Turkle’s arguments. She focuses only on the argument that our devices are causing us to be more alone. She does not mention the ways that it allows us to connect with people we wouldn’t have the means to connect with otherwise. This video from Apple shows the power of being able to connect with our devices, and shows the other side of the argument that Turkle missed in her talk.

Harmony’s blog post really spoke to me and I connected with a lot of things she said. She enjoys being present and connected online, but chooses to take breaks from her device for periods of time in order to be more mindful of the present moment. Her solution to this dilemma is simply finding balance between the online world and also living in a way that is “fully present”. I found this very inspiring and it is something I would like to strive towards. We are living in a world where the digital world gives us so many opportunities, why fight them? Take advantage of them- just don’t forget to live your present life and be in the moment.

I am grateful that I took this course because it is changing the way I think about digital citizenship and media literacy. It is forcing me to question my views and think more critically about what it means to be part of the online world. I can only hope that through this experience I can transfer what I have learned to the classroom so that my students can also be challenged and learn to be critical thinkers about this digital world we live in.

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