My Quest To Teach

October 6, 2017

Writing and Storytelling for Africans

Africa

Writing and Storytelling for Africans
by William Jackson, M.Ed. @wmjackson Twitter
Speaker at WordCamp DC, WordCamp Jacksonville,
WordCamp Wilmington N.C.

“Writers have to recognize the works of the artist and
those of the activist. Creating content is more than just
throwing words, video, pictures on a digital sheet of
paper. There is serious intellectual thought during the
writing process. Sometimes writing will be in a zone of
creativity and innovation to create new content that has
an intended outcome, but sometimes the outcomes are
unknown.” William Jackson
Professor Soyinka “Just sit down and write….” as he has
stated to the growing African writers across the continent.
The ability of a blogger / writer to write also means that
they have a responsibility to tell the story of those that
cannot write, those that are silent and have no voice.
Digital content is powerful and enabling to bring recog-
nition, attention and urgency to civic issues that need
to be addressed.
The growth of the blogger / writer is composed of periods
of growth, reconciliation, enlightenment and a civic
responsibility to write / blog not just for oneself, but for
those that do not have a voice and will not be heard.
The ability to share a story comes from the ability to listen
and apply knowledge from a person’s experiences,
interactions, goals for growth and even how mistakes are
made and learned from.
The diversity of culture influences a writer’s ability to
“touch” the people they are writing to or writing for.
When past writers applied their skills they shared stories
that could be connected to real life, to the experiences
that many knew they could connect to.
The diversity of African bloggers represents the diversity of
a continent that influences not just the global weather, but
has digital extensions that influence business, commerce,
entrepreneurial spirits of the dreamers, creators and
innovators that have ideas to change the world around them.
Africa is in a constant state of flux economically, educationally,
culturally and the future is unknown, but it is becoming
brighter and brighter a business and entrepreneurial
opportunities become available.
Writers like author and Professor Wole Soyinka who are
involved in civic issues, governmental policies and the
educational growth of youth, teens and adults. He
is of the past, but there are modern writers waiting
to be read.
The African continent has birthed intellectual and
intelligent writers that have embraced and applied
digital platforms to awaken and encourage others in
the African diaspora to spread their digital wings and
write. The storytellers of the past have grown and adapted
to the Bloggers, Vbloggers, Podcasters, Facebook Live
and Instagram Live visionaries building, creating, designing
and posting content that influences thought not just
emotions.
Stated by Soyinka, “when Africans learn the power they
have in their hands in writing, they can influence their
communities and make important and needed changes
because they will have a voice that others can hear and
follow.”
Writing is a grassroots process that builds knowledge in
Africans of all ages and can influence generations. The
educational process is key because as can be seen in Africa
it is dangerous to allow your colonizers to educate your
children. Their goals are not the goals of those being
oppressed. The goal of the oppressor is the keep the
oppressed ignorant. So that their resources can be drained
dry before the oppressed realize what is happening
to their lands, to their people and their very existence.
Stated by Prof. William Jackson of My Quest to Teach
“If we (Blacks) are not speaking for ourselves or writing
for ourselves, someone else is going to describe who we
are, where we came from and ultimately where we are going.”
This creates identity problems because those that are doing
the writing are not looking through the eyes of those being
written about. The people are not seen as people they are
seen as little things with no value, as Chinua Achebe states,
“as funny things.”
Too many stories are wrong in their direction to offer solutions
to issues that Africans are experiencing. Africans must be able
to tell their own stories because there is a story to tell…..
“Your pen has to be on fire.” Chinua Achebe
Resources:
How many people use social media in Africa?
http://www.cnn.com/2016/01/13/africa/africa-social-media-consumption/
BBC Africa
https://www.youtube.com/user/bbcafrica
10 Best African Speakers
https://www.africa.com/ted-global-2017-meet-the-10-africans-on-the-list-of-speakers/

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January 2, 2017

Africans Are Developing The Art of Writing and Blogging

Africans Are Developing The Art of Writing and Blogging
by William Jackson, M.Ed. @wmjackson
#MyQuestToTeach

“Educators are activists” WordCampNABSE 2016

As an instructor in the College of Education and Urban Studies at
Edward Waters College, the instructional goal is to reach students
to make learning relevant, engaging, fun and helping students to
apply to life not just academic lessons.

Tests do not judge the success of living away from home, tests do
not determine the career success of students, it is a gauge of
academic achievement and growth; there is more to it than just
assessments taken on a computer. This is why engagement,
exposure, hands-on and student lead instruction is vital anywhere
in the world.

Students need to understand the reasons for being a good reader,
why comprehension is important, the value of grammar and the
engagement of networking and collaboration. Accessing videos
from YouTube that contain lessons learned from Chinua Achebe
a Poet, Writer, Mentor, Political and Community Activists;
https://youtu.be/M5OAjnG6rKo involved in the community he
serves and provide a foundation why education is valuable.

The growing TEDX and TEDTALKs allows African across the
diaspora to share their thoughts, dreams, and challenges of a
united and progressive Africa.
It is important to go beyond just interpretation, understanding
and application of speaking, it is important to know how to put
these pieces of education, technology, commerce, trade, natural
resources and build a knowledge based society to use to grow
African communities and empower African children for generations
to come. “African children need to be taught how to be producers
at all levels, not just at the bottom being consumers.”
Prof. Wm Jackson

Stated in the TEDx, “Africa Post-Colonial Development:
Fatoumata Waggeh at TEDxGallatin” Africa must invest in herself
and not allow foreign countries dictate the priorities of her people.
No foreign country can understand the vision for another country
and make the necessary changes to create generational wealth,
progress and build all around stability.

Nations that do not invest in the growth of their children generational
run the risk to not developing into productive nations with thriving
economies, they rely on foreign investors and fall back into colonized
ideologies and economic slavery. The educational levels of citizens is
one of the important factors that plays into if a nation will be able to be
involved in global trade, technological innovation, the education of its
people and even influence the political stability of that nation.

Africans have a unique vision for change that can be applied to
many African communities across their respective nations. Listening
to writers and activists on YouTube that have influenced not just
thousands, but millions in South Africa, Kenya, Ghana Nigeria and
across the continent of Africa. There are important thought leaders
and entrepreneurs with progressive ideas and skills.

Wole Soyinka and Chinua Achebe share their passions to improving
their nation’s strength in areas of national educational accessibility,
political stability, growth in commerce, the participation in global
trade and applying technology to best serve the poor and underserved.
To effectively engage and empower with education is a key priority as
each generation moves towards entrepreneurship, youth and teens are
developing into smart creatives and technological innovators.

The careers of African societies are no longer just agriculture and
industrial they are progressively being adapted to knowledge application,
tech innovation and research and development. Technology has the
potential to reach millions to provide resources and new opportunities of
learning and workings to provide the necessary things families need.
The discussion of colonization by foreign rule can never stop because the
consequences are still seen today.

Colonization was designed to keep Africans “under” educated, lacking in
political power and even possessing little or no economic foundation to
build wealth and stability.
Africans must continue to apply their passions, abilities and talents to help
their communities growing through education to make transformative
changes using literature, writing, and the integration of technical resources.
“Getting things done is better than having things perfect. Done is better than
perfect. Whatever you have in your hands, get going with it. Just do it.”
Charles Igwe, Nollywood Global Media Group, Nigeria

Resources:
The Importance of Banks and Banking in Africa
https://youtu.be/D70ZybuB-rE

Bridging the African Diaspora
Bridging the Diaspora Divide – Teresa H. Clarke at TEDxEuston
https://youtu.be/sg6F-M6v1iM

Africa Post-Colonial Development: Fatoumata Waggeh at TEDxGallatin
https://youtu.be/s7lmz4UL4wE

Instagram for Ideas Lane Africa
https://www.instagram.com/ideaslaneafrica/

October 1, 2016

Africans Start to Hashtag and Google Yourselves Part 1

african
Africans Start to Hashtag and Google Yourselves
William Jackson, M.Ed.
@wmjackson
Edward Waters College
Educational Technology and Social Media
#MyQuestToTech

The elevation of Africans having access to the
Internet is increasing the digital footprint of
those denied access to information for years.
Internet access supplied by providers is allowing
people in cities, villages and towns unprecedented
access to information.

Africans are embracing their Afrinerdiness
(African Nerds) that encourages global collaboration,
cross cultural connections, access to entertainment
media, and educational resources never seen before.
There is so much digital eye candy that African teens
and young adults need to be cautious of the glitz and
glamour of global content.
As Africans grow in engagement, their words
will have new meaning in the global context of their
digital content that will expand. The perceptions
they create will define them, the digital ether can
quickly and unmercifully absorb the
attentions of Africans and present a unfathomable
world of cultural.

africa_google

Googling will have a new meaning for Africans,
their created content is fresh, unfiltered by world
exposure and lack of  Internet etiquette and guidelines
in some cases. African children are in many ways no
different than European, Asian or American, many
want their content to go viral, with the potential of
making them instant superstars and celebrities.

African parents like others from around the world
must be very cautious of their children’s access to
online content because it can literally be addicting
and life changing. Unfiltered access to the Internet
in some cases may be a Pandora box because African
children like those of other nations may not
inappropriate content being created and read
or viewed.

hashtags

For African parents to keep up with their children
they should Hashtag and Google their children
regularly. To digitally follow them, not stalk but
check to make sure they are not being lead or
drawn into dangerous digital territories.

African parents must be educated on setting
boundaries for their families in the absence of
local, national and continental laws safeguarding
children from predators, stalkers, scammers and
even terrorists. As a professor teaching
Educational Technology and Social Media safety
in higher education, youth, teens and even
young adults do not understand the dangers of
posting to much information online about
themselves, their families and even their
ideologies related to religion, sex and education.

There are still parts of Africa that are not and
may not embrace the ideas of freedom of speech,
and open society to information and even the
freedom of girls and women accessing
educational resources. Educational institutions
across Africa are going to have to develop
policies and procedures to make sure all
students no matter their religious background,
cultural upbringing, economic status, political
status and even mobility will have to have
equitable access and support.

As a parent of two I demand equal educational
resources for my daughter like my son. My
daughters value is just as important as my son
from elementary to university levels.
As an educator I have equal expectations of success
for my male and females students. My educational
diversity is that I teach on the elementary and
college levels and see all sides of educational
success and the results of educational failure by
lack of involvement by parents.

290982

The development of policies, procedures and
practices cannot be made by one entity, it must
be inclusive of Internet Service Providers,
educational institutions, departments of
government and even involve African parental
groups because  they are the grassroots of
addressing issues and concerns.

There must be further opportunities to teach
parents about the online world so they can monitor
their children through Googling and Hashtags.
Many in government and business are of the
opinion that it is too early to address these issues,
I say there is not a level to early to empower parents
to teach their kids and to be  cautious and aware
of their safety.
Just as in the United States, I travel to teach
parents about Social Media Safety, Etiquette,
prevention of cyberbullying,  cyberstalking,
Sexting and other online activities are creating
social issues that have direct influence in the
social and educational order for families.

google

For too long Europeans have tried to determine
what is best for African people without asking
them, Internet access creates a  platform where
education is for everyone – equally.
The power of Google searches, Hashtags,
Branding, Marketing,  collaboration and even
association has a powerful place in global
communities. African parents learn to
Google their children,and Hashtag them.

hashtags2

Part II Suggestions for African Parents
When Monitoring Their Children Online

marcus

Hashtags
The Africa the media never shows
#TheAfricaTheMediaNeverShowsYou

Twitter
https://twitter.com/hashtag/TheAfricaTheMediaNeverShowsYou?src=hash

Elle Decoration
http://elledecoration.co.za/theafricathemedianevershowsyou-2/

The Guardian
http://www.theguardian.com/global-development-professionals-network/2015/jun/30/the-africa-the-media-never-shows-you-in-pictures

Blogging about Africa
https://blog.fh.org/2015/07/theafricathemedianevershowsyou/

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