If we know that Gen Z prefers to engage in web and mobile environments (‘prefers’ is probably an understatement), then why aren’t we doing more to meet them in their world?
Any school who still believes a student will walk through the office and knock on their door to discuss something that’s bothering them is delusional. They’re stuck in ways that don’t resonate with students anymore. Just because the school was built in 1956 (or even 1996) doesn’t mean we need to operate that way. Schools who feel ‘threatened’ by the use of technology to help students engage in critical success and wellness content are completely missing the point.
Meeting students in ‘their’ world better connects them to support resources at the school. Students are adept online researchers. The key is to give them what they want- in the environment they want it- and in doing so, encourage them to seek the physical resources offered by the school. We can’t avoid the world they live in. Kids live on these devices, and schools have to find a way to deliver critical success and wellness content to them- in their environment.
The problem is your comfort zone, not theirs. You are the one that needs to change the way you connect with students. To expect them to change to meet you in your world is a dangerous expectation.
Schools are more and more responsible for teaching character development and providing wellness content to students. Since we all want that teaching to be as effective as possible, use the tools they use to make the connection.