Are (fire)walls the solution?

created by asingh2 via imgflip

Negative influences?  Porn sites?  Inappropriate pictures/conversations?  Student’s bullying one another?

Let’s have a serious discussion about this, please.

Do you know what happens in a school when filters or firewalls block things on the internet?

Actually, let’s take a step back from technology and schools, and think about how all of those underage ‘smokers’ and ‘drinkers’ are finding access to the things that they are not permitted to have.  Kids have ingenuity – and while I am certainly not condoning underage drinking and smoking, my point is simply that when you say “you can’t do that/go there/experience that” some kids are still going to find a way around it.

We can filter everything we want in schools – but I question what happens when our kids head out into the community?  Who filter’s content for young people then?

For anyone interested in the Banned book phenomenon:




3 thoughts on “Are (fire)walls the solution?

  1. Great post Amy! I really enjoyed your use of a vlog for this week’s response. I think I’ll need to try that one of these weeks!

    I very much agree with your thoughts on firewalls. I think by creating barriers on these inappropriate sites, we aren’t providing our students and children opportunities to act responsibly and apply their digital citizenship. Just this week I taught my students (7 and 8 year olds) about green sites, yellow sites, and red sites and we discussed the “gut” feeling that you get when you stumble across a site that you know is inappropriate. Despite being so young, my students proved to be very aware of their responsibility to leave “red sites” immediately and tell an adult. Obviously I don’t want my student to encounter inappropriate content, especially at school, but I fear that if we attempt to block all “red sites”, we are doing a disservice to our students.

    I loved the connection you made to banned books. I have read several of those books, and although some may argue they contain “questionable” content, others could create long lists of wonderful lessons that teach story provides!

  2. How true Amy. I love the vlog. I also need to be more courageous and create a vlog one of these days. I think you make, perhaps the most important point of all. There will always be these negatives out there, so we are best to deal with them, talk to kids openly about them and help them to find their own way to healthy choices.

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