Everybody was talking about it and by everybody I mean all of my students. I expect them to discuss reality television, the NBA lockout, even homecoming requests on Facebook. But I don’t expect detailed conversations about Steve Jobs. Not from high schoolers. And certainly not in a meaningful way. But the way they talked about Jobs got me thinking. They were right. The reaction in the last several days has been remarkable.
Teaching is about opportunity presenting itself and this a chance to for meaningful discussion, writing, analysis, anotation. Having students study/discuss these online “memorials” teaches a variety of skills: media literacy, memorializing in modern culture, the impact of social media, our “relationship” to public figures, the importance of technology, technology innovation and so on. All of it’s critical thinking. Who are we as a society in relationship to this loss? This weekend I’ll post some of the best “remembrances” for classroom use.
Pitch Me Another: Apple’s Ads
The New Yorker’s Back Issues blog put together a retrospective of Apple advertising spanning the last several decades. It’s great especially the advertisement from 1984. An easy way to do evaluate advertising, assess a change over time in audience expectations, even print advertising’s use of word choice.
The the word choice in the hashtags alone is meaningful. iSad sounds so much like loneliness. Like loss. Like grief. Even I can barely stand it and thankyousteve sounds almost like the closing of a letter or email or text. Now perhaps I’ve been manipulated by all the media coverage too but it is fascinating. The language is meaningful and economical. Consider class discussion, writing prompt, or big picture analysis.
Here are some useful tweets: