My Quest To Teach

May 26, 2016

Girls and Bullying: Pain and Potential PTSD

Girls and Bullying: Pain and Potential PTSD
William Jackson, M.Ed.
Edward Waters College
@wmjackson – william.jackson@ewc.edu

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Girls of all ages are involved in online
communication that has exceeded face to face
communication. They are sharing photos, videos,
emoji’s and other graphical displays of emotions
and friendships. BFF is a new word in the English
language.
The increase of a girl’s social life has transitioned
to digital relationships that travel across the
digital languages of Social Media sites.

Facebook, Instagram, Tumblr, Twitter and other
forms of digital communications are dominated by
the chatter of digital words, phrases, acronyms
and the occasional use of profanity and sexual
dialogue. A girl or young ladies digital life is
different than how they are in real life situations.

Direct interaction creates opportunities for
dialogue that can be respectful and caring. Technology
has opened a Pandora’s Box to potential vicious Bullying,
Cyberbullying, Cyberstalking and Sexting. These actions
have created a change in digital interactions and
etiquette. It is dangerous not to know what
Cyberbullying and Cyberstalking are.

Girls must be taught how to “talk” digitally to each
other and not to bully, or in the case of technology
Cyberbully. Brooklyn a student says that, “Parents
need to observe their child’s accounts to see what
they are doing to keep their children especially girls
safe from predators and others that would do them harm.”

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The end of each school year is creating fear,
apprehension and even causing parents pulling their
children out of school early because of fear from
violence as retribution of past offenses even if it is
a minor verbal altercation or a digital misunderstanding.
Too many children and teens do not value life as it
should be valued and their natures are more violent and
less compassionate. Communication with wireless devices
has created a paradigm shift for parents, educators, and
even law enforcement in the attempts to monitor, educate
and prevent bullying actions by girls and women.

Statistics show that girls will bully using technology
more than boys and a girl’s online activity is more
vicious. Even television media has shown true to life
movies about girls bullying in the traditional sense in
the school environment and also through digital means.
The unfortunate deaths by suicide and attempted suicides
are reported weekly on national news stations that bullying
and cyberbullying creates havoc emotionally and
psychologically for girls. Girls as they mature into
women have stated that they suffer from PTSD because of
the stress resulting from bullying through middle and high
school.

Speaking at national conferences to teens and young adults,
I have spoken with women in their 30’s and 40’s that carry
the emotional scars of bullying from middle and high school.
The reality that many parents do not understand or are in
denial, girls are more likely than boys to participate in
cyberbullying, (cyber-bullying via text messages or online
via Internet).

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Sharing information to empower and engage parents as the
school year comes to a close, parents need to check their
children’s Social Media accounts and their digital devices.
Parents need to understand their children, who their friends
are and even associates. The recent deaths of girls from
fights have made national attention and a warning sign to
parents. It cannot be said that this is a surprise because
there are signs, parents need to recognize them.

Schools cannot be fully blamed for bullying, because at
the end of the day, students go home to their parents,
seclude themselves in their rooms and use their digital
devices to make the lives of other girls and even boys hell
on Social Media. Parents are accountable and responsible
because they are paying for the very devices their children
are using to bully with.

The consequences of bullying do have serious emotional
and psychological consequences that can last a lifetime.
Girls who are bullied have a greater risk for depression
which can lead to drug dependency, alcohol and other
substances. As a teacher in elementary and higher education
here are some tips that may help protect kids from
cyberbullying, but it takes parents being active, engaged
and involved.

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Reinforce in your children not to give out personal
information online, when engaged in online don’t fill in
personal information. In online profiles, chat rooms, blogs,
or on web site surveys be careful what personal information
you provide. Not all sites are honest and beneficial.Don’t
ever tell anyone your email or instant messaging passwords,
even your friends or BFF’s.

If someone sends a mean or threatening message, don’t
respond, get a screen capture and save it to report to
school administration or law enforcement. Don’t be a
cyberbully, because you may find yourself on the other
end of being investigated by law enforcement and school
officials. Laws are enforced where all digital devices can
be taken from the home and searched for “evidence” for
cyberbullying.

Knowing the definition of bullying and cyberbullying is not
enough, knowing that anyone can be a bully or can be bullied
is important. Prevention and protection is the goal of my
blog, to empower and educate parents. Parents need to read
student policy and procedure books, they need to read
Internet policies for the school district.
The end of the school year should be a calm transition,
not one filled with dread for the summer,
fearing being bullied, harassed and stalked.

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December 1, 2015

STEAM Embraces All Children of Color and Culture

decisions
STEAM Embraces All Children of Color and Culture

Black kids can change the world if given a chance to shine.
The educational system must inspire and illuminate the
greatness and innovation inside children that should have
the same opportunities for a quality education no matter
what zip code they live in.

The beauty of STEM / STEAM / STREAM / CSTREAM / STEM2
is the opportunity for instruction to be on a level of integration
that demands the instruction to be student centered and not
teacher centered. Everyone from the administration, faculty,
students and even office, cafeteria and custodial staff can and
should contribute to the climate of acceptance, high
expectations and educational success.

Students are exposed to new areas that require critical and
higher order thinking skills. These new learning directions do
require innovative teaching strategies, but the potential to
provide opportunities to grow educationally and cognitively
far outweighs the alternatives of educational neglect and
instructional staleness.

Schools that are consistently under performing have a
responsibility to make the necessary changes to provide
quality and equitable educational opportunities. Teaching to
“the test” is not working nor is it preparing students for future
educational experiences, preparing for careers or fostering
creativity in children. If schools are teaching to a test then they
are not worthy of the titles they have to prepare students to
be future leaders and contributors to society. The contributions
will only be in the criminal juvenile justice systems of this nation.

Urban schools are often neglected, given limited resources;
money is not always the issue, the access to quality educators,
books that are current and relevant to learning in today’s digital
world and access to professional educators that are leaders in
their careers and have the skillsets to motivate both students
and parents. How can students strive for success if they do
not see successful people or have access to mentors that have
been where the students are and made it out? Success breeds
success.

Educational leaders make the necessary platforms to teach and
parents make the necessary sacrifices to make sure their children
are learning despite their current socio-economic situations.

Watching Black Girls Code and seeing the eagerness to learn in
the eyes of Black girls, listening to the hope that reverberates
from their hearts, it is evident that they as well as thousands of
others that education is their way out of their current economic
and environmental circumstances. Teachers need to
understand this to see why sometimes students don’t get
the value of education, but once exposed their eyes are open.
Parents don’t understand the sacrifices necessary because they
are already sacrificing to stay alive.

Children are children and their limited experiences in life
don’t turn into appreciation and even love until years later
when the light bulbs  of comprehension illuminate the galaxy
of learning, creativity, confidence, self-esteem and innovation
that was buried beneath the  depths of immaturity, economic
neglect and even institutionalized economic despair.

The reality is that educators hold the keys to inspiring kids
to grow beyond their current situations. If educators lack
confidence in their children, and parents do not understand
the intrigue educational nuances with curriculum’s, testing,
interpretation of data, not valuing nor respecting the
educational process then students are placed at the bottom
before they can strive to succeed as they work to the top.

decisions3

Black children are talented, Black children are capable, Black
children are intelligent and Black children are innovative if
given the right tools.
Provided the resources and teachers that want to be there to
teach regardless of zip codes or income brackets. Technology
is not the magic potion, but can be the key to opening
intellectual doors of Black and minority children of color
and culture. To allow Black children to be innovative and
creative. Tech companies owned by Blacks are only 1% of
the companies nationally; this has to chance.

Episodes of Black Girls Code shows that collaboration with
community partners can inspire students to embrace technology
and how to effectively apply that knowledge to building a product
that Black girls can see the development of their product.
“Seeing is believing and believing leads to achieving.
“William Jackson, TOTY 2015

Students in Engineering and Technology class – Elementary Level

As a educator in elementary and higher education I see the
dynamics of both sides of the educational coin. As a past
STEAM educator teaching Engineering and Technology in the
elementary environment, I have seen the excitement of learning,
the explosion of confidence in my students when they grasp
complex concepts and also the pride in seeing how Blacks
have made dynamic and historic achievements when watching
YouTube videos of Blacks in history.

Teaching my Educational Technology classes on the college level
my students, mostly minorities learn to value and importantly
incorporate technology to prepare them for careers that demand
skills that are futuristic and engaging.

The dialogue continues and should inspire innovation, ignite
imagination and cultivate creativity in our children especially
children of color and dynamic culture.


Church of Christ Lectureship 2015

Resources:

Black Girls Code Part #1 Oakland, California
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AQJU6ehn6-s

Black Girls Code Part #2 Miami, Florida
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=acl_orsqXVg

Black Girls Code Part #3 The Revolution is Digital
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MMXIKjUXy-k

William Jackson discusses Black Girls and STEM

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