8 Important Tips For Back To School Tech Success

The summer of 2017 is rapidly coming to a close and the school year is for most of us, in session, or soon-to-be. Along with new classes, teachers, sporting events, and other fall activities, you can be certain of one thing, technology is center stage wherever you go. Whether it is smartphones, tablets or laptops, these tech gadgets are in almost every student’s hands. With that in mind, some tech-etiquette, or techiquette, is sure to offer insight and help during those first daunting weeks of the new school year and beyond. So all you tech savvy military kids and families who live both on and off base, here are eight important tips:

  • As you get back into the new school year, whether connecting at the lunch table or in class with new acquaintances or old friends, avoid having your cell phone constantly interrupting the conversation. Yes, our military kids may rely on this as they transition to new schools, and rightfully so. But, try to avoid the urge to be constantly staring into your smartphone. That may seem impossible in today’s culture, but I assure you, you will miss important details and even seem unengaged and miss possible opportunities to connect. Also, forcing yourself to make conversation, is a good thing and so often our military kids are already great at this!
  • Avoid responding to texts, social media posts or emails out of emotion. The beginning of the year, especially if you are at a new school and/or community, can be stressful, tiring and certainly overwhelming. Avoid responding when you are angry or upset. Confide in a trusted friend, adult or parent. And then, sleep on it, and see if that brings a new perspective. Almost everything looks different and brighter in the morning.
  • If you find a group chat is taking a negative or unkind turn, discreetly sign off or take even one step further and leave the chat all together. Especially if gossiping is involved and certainly if any type of bullying is taking place. That can take a very dangerous turn quickly. Report this to appropriate adults in your life to help you handle the situation, and take further action if needed.
  • Refrain from “friend” requesting your teachers. As you return to school, or transition to a new school, you may have those one or two teachers that you especially enjoy. They are adults in authority and avoid friend requesting, etc. to keep things appropriate and professional.
  • “Follow” and subscribe to your school’s social media resources. Whether some of these are the schools Twitter feed, Facebook page, or signing up for reminder texts for events and happenings, they are all great resources. Take advantage of these, they really do make life easier and streamline correspondences.

  • For our college level military kids, do not post your schedule online. Social media is not the platform to share all your comings and goings, and it can actually be a very real safety issue. Share that information only with those close to you.
  • Remember that when signed into your school’s Wi-Fi, most schools have access to all your correspondences. They also are able to track your browser history, so only visit appropriate sites. They could also have access to that not-so-pleasant tweet about a teacher or administrator, so avoid even making comments like those altogether. That could certainly make for a rocky start to your school year!
  • The most obvious, yet so important, avoid inappropriate picture sharing or posting. And, avoid profane language that could inadvertently be sent to the wrong person. All of these are potential disasters waiting to happen.

So, let the full force of a new school year begin, in all its hustle and bustle. There is always an excitement in the air, as fall begins and school starts up again. But, be armed with some “techiquette.” Our military kids are faced with so much, providing some simple tips is just one other way to keep them on that straight and narrow path toward success!

Author’s Note: Please let these tips be conversation starters. There are many areas beyond these, which may require an in-depth discussion between parents and children. It is our hope that these points start conversations that last beyond the start of the school and throughout the year.

Written by ©Susan Vernick, along with her two teen-age daughters, Anna and Lauren. Etiquette Chics ™

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