Friday, May 30, 2008

Roosevelt School Students: Future of Union City and the Nation

On Thursday, May 29, 2008, the Union City Board of Education continued its admirable comprehensive educational formation with a presentation for hundreds of 5th-8th grade students from the Roosevelt School.

This venue was part of a continual process whereby various elements from throughout the Union City Schools community have received training. Previous venues that I have been privileged to conduct included the security professionals, school crossing guards, district administrators and students.

As the featured speaker for this event, made possible through the leadership of Principal Joseph Polinik and Guidance Counselor Connie Agostini, I delivered a presentation titled Social Networking for Students: Online Communities, Cell Phones, Instant Messaging. After delivering the presentation to two large assemblies of students and teachers, I was invited to visit various classrooms to discuss this issue and the importance of character as the foundation for a student’s life. The students were encouraged to realize that their good example is critical to their friends, families, school, community and even the nation since they are the future of America.

As with my recent presentation to over 500 students of the Edison School in Union City, New Jersey, today’s event focused on the following:

Social networking technology:

  • Instant Messaging, email, voice connection and web cams
  • Online Community websites, such as MySpace and Facebook
  • Media sharing websites, such as YouTube, Picasa and Flickr
  • Cell Phones for voice, text, picture and video sharing

Some of the highlights of the event included:

  • Focusing on what it means to be a student which includes personal responsibility, reaching one’s full potential and achieving greatness by making sacrifices. Students discussed the importance of encouraging one another and avoiding negativity and criticism.
  • Honestly confronting problems at home and school.
  • The importance of working together and being involved with the community including family and friends, church, community organizations and school.
  • Developing personal leadership especially through the quality of character.
  • The use of a Secret Power: "You have the power to change the world by helping each other do what is right."

We then explored the dangers of inappropriate content, including:

  • Misinformation
  • Pictures / Videos
  • Language / Sexting
  • Gangs / Criminal Activity
  • Bullies / Cyberbullying
  • Predators

All students were encouraged to get involved, making "Character: The Heart of the Matter," as inspired by Rachel Scott's Challenge:

    by looking for the Best in Others
    Set Goals—Keep a Journal
    Input Determines Output
    Small Acts of Kindness = Huge Impact
    With Family & Friends

The Roosevelt School deserves commendation for its dedication to their students with experiences such as this venue that encourages character as the framework for properly using modern technology and for all of the decisions they make in their lives.

Vincent Bove on Character (0:11)
Rachel's Challenge (4:01)
<a HREF="">Play the clip on YouTube</A>


Rachel's Challenge Click here to visit site
Character Education Partnership Click here to visit site
Sacred Honor: Police Officer, Soldier, Patriot Click here to visit site

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