I'm Facebook friends with some of my students. I don't go out of my way to add them, that would be creepy. They find me and feel comfortable enough to add me, I guess. My experience has taught me that a no-bullshit relationship is the type of thing my students need in order to trust their teachers and succeed. At this point, one might think:
"But accepting their request on Facebook? This could lead to something messed up. Especially since you're a teacher."
Relax. I add them on limited profile - I have a separate list for students. It's evident however, that some of my students have no idea what privacy settings are. In fact, I have to manually add them to the hide list on mini-feed as some of their statuses definitely fall into the "too much information" bucket. Sometimes, I make sarcastic comments on their statuses which often times leads to their embarrassment. Sorry, that's what you get for adding a jackass teacher on Facebook. Put me on limited profile, damn it! Or do nothing and see what happens.
Over the past year and a half, I have noticed a contradiction in what students put up as their personality in school versus what they often post. In fact, most of my students front a bad ass profile at school. Yet, if I perform a simple status search of my student list in Facebook, I get some supremely whiny and bitchy updates. Below, I have gathered a handful of random status messages, excluding lyrics, songs, and videos. Try to detect a general theme:
- "I been through alot, seen alot, heard alot but at the end of the day im happy with the person i have become, and that's what matters."
- “How can you expect me to say what you want to hear if you’re not going to take it in? You’re just wasting my time, talk to me when you grow up!"
- “Love is a war, you either ready to fight or quick to give up & loose it all.”
- “The key to moving on is forgiving the person that did you wrong...”
- “a woman of ya choice should never knock you down clown you in front of da homies mad you look bad and be so controlling she should be understanding.”
- “ii guess we dnt always get wha we want in lifee..”
- “just say u don't care & u give up then I'll be done with u for good ..... "
- “meet me halfway?”
- “whyy do all giirlss doo iis liee??”
- “I swear these lil bitchs be blowing mines like they still fake and talk shit and then smile in nikkas face like cut it out mama please."
- "OMFG, love sux, i just wanna cry and listen to Dashboard Confessional all day."
Okay, I made the last one up, but you get the idea: this is all very emo. Thanks to these updates, I have come to the conclusion that deep down inside, most of my students are about as gangsta as Brandon Flowers. Teenagers are the same everywhere it seems.
Kids, there's nothing wrong with being emo. Just, you know, stop pretending you're not. I know a lot of you like Drake, Eminem and Lil' Wayne, but allow me to introduce you to something you may like even more: