In order to build community support for technology use in the classroom, we must make the community aware of the technology, but we must also educate the public on all sides of the issue. A lot of parents seem deathly scared of social networking mostly because they don’t understand what it is. If we inform them, guiding them through the more technical aspects of web 2.0, then they would be more likely to support any use of these social elements in our classes (linked blogs, uncensored wikis, etc.).
I think that this could be done by holding meetings at local schools in order to address the myspace/internet safety issues. There should be a place where parents can ask as many questions as they want and learn about the educational benefits of moving beyond pencil and paper based classrooms. I would like to set something like this up at my school. These are the resources that I have so far. Let me know if I need to include anything else.
Safe Blogging and Social Networking Resources
Karl Fisch’s Internet Safety Links
A wiki introducing Internet Safety to Parents
A sad little article about the lack of understanding among teachers about internet safety.
I am still working out what this meeting(s) should look like. If you have any suggestions, let me know.