Sun.Star Pampanga - - OPINOIOPNINION -

GRETCHEN C. GAMBALA With all the tech­no­log­i­cal ad­vance­ments, most kids have be­come more in­ter­ested in the so­cial me­dia than in any­thing else in the world at this day and age. I see it on my own kids spend­ing time brows­ing the in­ter­net al­most for­got to do other chores in the house. The in­ter­net has robbed us of chil­dren play­ing in the streets and has re­placed them with kids fo­cused on their gad­gets. Over the years, I have learned to cope with the changes in my very own chil­dren, and have learned that these kids are also fac­ing their own strug­gles with all the new things the world of­fers them - they need help. As adults, we have to guide them. Ba­si­cally, they need to be ed­u­cated. They have to learn that more than a gad­get there are more im­por­tant things to give more time.

Classes have started, and I have made a res­o­lu­tion not to go gaga over why kids sub­mit projects they grabbed from in­ter­net sources and/ or when they dis­cuss things as if they're older than they ac­tu­ally are. I have de­cided that be­cause we can't force kids to ma­ture, adults must adopt their youth in­stead. So, as a teacher, it is just right to guide them through the course of their learn­ing and make them re­al­ize that the books, the class­room, and us are still their best friend to­wards learn­ing. It doesn't mean I'm con­sent­ing their act pla­gia­rism act (copy­ing projects with­out cit­ing the source is wrong in so many lev­els), and their over-ob­ses­sion with tech­nol­ogy - it is just that now, I am more pre­pared to deal with how tech­nol­ogy and class­room learn­ing some­times clashes. Since we can't stop the grow­ing in­flu­ence of the in­ter­net in our chil­dren, we must be­gin to uti­lize it for their ben­e­fit.

It would be hyp­ocrite of me to say that the in­ter­net has not been help­ful to teach­ers be­cause it has. For so many years, we have also re­lied on it for ad­di­tional in­for­ma­tion; for easy ac­cess il­lus­tra­tions for our learn­ing aids; even for con­tact­ing the par­ents of our stu­dents their con­cerns. I re­al­ized that if chil­dren are guided well, they don't be­come the kids we're afraid they'll be. I hope my col­leagues have the same re­al­iza­tion and learn to also use tech­nol­ogy at their ad­van­tage. I have, and on the first day of classes I had a fit of laugh­ter and a lot of ex­plain­ing to do when I caught all my stu­dents' at­ten­tion be­cause on the board I wrote: "Bae, learn."

--oOo-The au­thor is Teacher I at Buen­suceso El­e­men­tary School, Arayat West District

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