Two Things That Won’t Bite: The Internet and Buddy the Dog.

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It’s 2009. Can’t we all just get along?

Google tells me the internet was invented in the 1940’s (by the military, not you Al Gore). Although it wasn’t used much until universities began transmitting information between campuses in the late 60’s.

Isn’t it about time that school districts made friends with it? 40 years later and we are still running scared.

Educators should be leading the fight to have open access to the internet in schools. Instead it seems like we are attempting to limit it.He Can't Really Use the Laptop... He Doesn't Have Thumbs.

High school students have been cruising the web their entire lives (granted, they may have started on a dial up connection… but that counts… although barely).

Far too many schools still limit access to students (and in some cases staff).


We continue to believe the only way for students to learn from the internet is to use it as an electronic encyclopedia.

If we would unblock content what’s the worst thing that could happen?

Are administrators, teachers, and technology people still worried about losing their jobs if a student is caught looking at inappropriate sites (and trust me the key is catching them… because they’re already looking).

Are we afraid students are going to see something they shouldn’t? Will students discover something they haven’t already seen (at home… on the very same internet)?

Do we worry about students wasting time in class? Shouldn’t teachers be making sure they use their time wisely in the classroom or computer lab?

As educators are we just being lazy? Is it easier to block content than take the steps necessary to control it?

What scares us?

I certainly don’t know.

Nobody does.

Consequently, we just keep going down the same path where we limit our students’ ability to use the greatest invention since the bicycle (you have to admit, riding a bike had to be pretty cool in the beginning… no feeding it, no cleaning up after it…).

Why do we insist on keeping the internet caged up like an animal?

I treat my 4-legged friend better.

Buddy the Dog (formerly owned by my evil spawn until she got tired of walking him) doesn’t bite.

He’s more of a lover. And a napper.

His worst personality trait is he might oversleep and miss his next nap. Consequently, we allow him to have complete access to the yard when we are gone.

We don’t limit him. All day long he wanders the yard and sleeps. Sleeps and wanders.

Mainly sleeps, I think (although the soon to be working Buddy the Dog Cam will show us for sure).

We don’t put him in a cage because he “might” find a little trouble.

I feel the same about the internet.

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5 Responses to “Two Things That Won’t Bite: The Internet and Buddy the Dog.”

  1. Deland
    on Oct 4th, 2009
    @ 5:55 pm

    I couldn’t bookmark your blog fast enough. Thank you for the laughs!

  2. Pat
    on Oct 9th, 2009
    @ 4:47 am

    I loved this post! Bud the Teacher wrote in his blog along the same lines. He said that district filters should not be used as classroom management tools. Too many teachers want to place the responsibility on others instead of themselves.

  3. Adelia
    on Oct 10th, 2009
    @ 3:53 pm

    Perfect! Now if the technology department will just listen.

  4. Marc Shaw
    on Oct 15th, 2009
    @ 3:33 pm

    Hey, I read a lot of blogs on a daily basis and for the most part, people lack substance but, I just wanted to make a quick comment to say GREAT blog!…..I”ll be checking in on a regularly now….Keep up the good work! :)

    - Marc Shaw

  5. Jan Rhodes
    on Feb 6th, 2010
    @ 12:38 pm

    I’m a tech coordinator at a small school. At our school the mindsets are reversed. My opinion is the final responsibility of what a student is or is not doing on the Internet lies with the adult standing in the classroom. We cannot rely solely on a filter to block all of the “bad stuff” out there.
    Social networking has become an issue this year. Students find ways to get on Facebook while at school. (Surprise! – not) Parents call administration wanting to know why their child is on FB during class. Administration is then unhappy, which in turn makes the teacher(s) unhappy. They all then turn to me to “fix it” and make it go away. I always tell them, “I’m not the Facebook police. ” There are more important technology issues that take up my day.

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