My Quest To Teach

March 23, 2013

The Blerdy Blackness of Technology

Filed under: Uncategorized — William Jackson @ 12:08 am

STEAM  and Community Technology Instructor

STEAM and Community Technology Instructor

The Blerdy Blackness of Technology

The Blackness of technology is growing; it is a shining
Black light of intelligence, creativity and innovation;
basking in its diversified influenced by people of color.

The engagement of technology allows Black children
and children of color to expand their intellectual and
creative abilities beyond sports, entertainment and the
stereotypical elements that society deems appropriate
for Black children. Black children are more than items
for entertainment, objects to parade around in rap videos,
they are more than being portrayed as gunman, thieves,
in poverty, drug dealers in video games that glamorize
prison and crime. Black children, teens and young adults
have Blerd and Bleek skills and talents that should be
encouraged, supported and importantly respected and
cultivated.

As President Obama has stated, America will not achieve
the greatness it is destined if Black children are not
educated to the best of their abilities. That is coming from
the TOP Blerd of America.

It is now cool to be a Nerd and Geek; to love Science,
to read, enjoy comic books and the intellectual enjoyment
of attending technology conferences, workshops and seminars.
Blacks that do not feel secure about their Blerdiness are
insecure about their own identities, it is not about embracing
“whiteness” it is about embracing the empowerment and
engagement of technology. This is what I tell my elementary
engineering students. To be self confident, to have high
self esteem and high expectations for their success with
technology.

Being a Nerd you sometimes get out in public to show your
Nerdiness, bask in intellectual ability to “come out” because
you are proud to be smart, talented and love technology.
America may have the mentality that Blacks are not intellectually
capable of using technology. They had the same mentality about
the Tuskegee Airman (Red Tails). This closed mindedness
still shows that even with technology there is ignorance
and racism. Blacks still have to fight past the stereotypes,
so when the word Blerd and others are used as Kat Calvin
states that Blacks are “wanting to OWN who we are, our history,
our culture, our uniqueness.

Blerds are not scared to be seen in public libraries either
in the DVD section under technology, programming and
web development or in the science and engineering section
with books in hand and a joyful bounce in their step.

The integration of STEAM Science Technology Engineering
Arts and Mathematics, in more elementary schools has
allowed Black children to explore new areas of intellectual
growth. STEAM encourages critical thinking skills and higher
order rationalization that is needed in corporate careers and in
scientific careers requiring research skills. Knowledge of
engineering and math that even embraces the Arts.

Blerds like Shareff Jackson (Philadelphia) let it be known
that #ScienceLooksGood on his web site. He shows the
coolness and awesomeness to be a Blerd
http://shareefjackson.com/
Young ladies like Tiffany Duhart (Jacksonville, Fl.) who
flash their Tumblr, Twitter, Instagram account names so
fast you have to re-wind your mind to replay the addresses
are showing that women have Swaggalicious Blerdiness and
possess #BlerdGirl powers.

Women like Amanda Spann of Blerdology.co
that mentor and offer girls opportunities to learn how to code
and many other technology skills. Even my wife Cheryl using
technology to promote her catering business Sister2Sister Catering
sister2sistercatering.wordpress.com
learning how to blog and
post her recipes and catering jobs. Using Instagram and Twitter
sharing her culinary skills passed down from the great cooks
in her family. There are many others!!!!

Terms such as Blerds, (Black Nerds), Bleeks (Black Geeks)
and a association of complementary phrases: #Blerdology,
#BlackLadyNerd, #BlerdMovement, #BlerdGirl, #Nerdlife,
#BlerdSwag, #BlackGirls, #BlerdLife, # Swaggalicious #Swag,
#BlackHack, even on Social Media sites like Tumblr where
you will find associated pictures:
http://www.tumblr.com/tagged/blerd are attracting a following.

This is not a new direction in technology, but a gradual
transition that Blacks and other people of color are migrating.
Forming their own communities that are starting to rival
non-Black groups in membership and social consciousness
of how important technology is and will be in the future.
Blacks are not only attending, but creating their own technology
conferences like:
Blogging While Brown http://bloggingwhilebrown.com/
Displaying the ability of Blacks to uplift and build their own up
in support and recognition. Blogging While Brown has grown to
become the premier blogging conference dedicated to education,
collaboration, and innovation among bloggers of color.

Shifting paradigms creating Blerdiness from elementary
classrooms like mines to colleges like #FAMU where my son a
Blerd majoring in Microbiology. He recently attended the Maize
Genetics Conference in Chicago, this elevated his Blerdiness
higher on the Blerd scale, dare I say higher than mines???
Shifting paradigms, creating Blerds from elementary classrooms
like mines to colleges like #FAMU where my Blerd son is majoring
in Microbiology. He recently attended the Maize Genetics Conf.
outside of Chicago. His Blerdiness is high on the Blerd scale.

Education has changed with more schools, even elementary
schools having computer labs, technology centers, students
building Apps, STEM and STEAM programs. Students are
involved in projects, managing data, collaborative engagement
locally and globally. Students are comparing and contrasting
data, examining human capital and human genetics, managing
the placement of people and their skills to accomplish tasks
that have international affects, all using technology.

I was a Blerd before Blerds were recognized; I enjoy
reading, listening to DVD’s, documentaries and still have my
comic books from the 1980’s. I read about Malcolm X and
his passion to learn. He had a deep love of mathematics and
stated his college was a library.
When asked where the idea for his new last name came
from, he said in a television interview that the “X stands for
the unknown, as in mathematics.” That is a true Blerd….

As Black children grow and mature not only will their
designation of self change, but the solidification of their
place in a world where technology is life and life is
technology. Blerds are developing a natural equilibrium
with the technology. They are developing their own Matrix,
their own ether, not waiting on others to define their existence.

Resources:
Blacks In Technology
https://www.blacksintechnology.net/

Blerds Came from Where
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CEM45v3wR10
Great discussion on Blerds

Attack of the Blerds
By Kat Calvin
http://www.bitdigest.net/attack-of-the-blerds/

“Blerds”: The Rise of the Black Nerd Movement
http://www.villagevoice.com/2002-07-30/news/the-rise-of-the-black-nerd/full/

Blerdology
http://blerdology.co/

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1 Comment

  1. Absolutely! “a world where technology is life and life is
    technology” –same is true for math and everything in our world. We can’t escape it. I am so happy that children of color are being empowered by people of color who are celebrating their rich heritage, intelligence, and ability to influence in special ways “with STEAM”. Glad I was introduced to your blog and work by Andrea M (Detroit).

    Like

    Comment by LaToniyaAJones (@LaToniyaAJones) — March 24, 2013 @ 6:28 pm


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