Millennials are now the majority of the workforce in America and represent a growing number of parents of students. Generation Z is now filling our K-12 schools and institutions of higher education and bringing dramatic generational differences and opportunities into our classrooms. The topics below are designed to inform and equip you and your team to effectively engage Millennials and Generation Z in our schools and academic settings.
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Kids/Teens and Social Media: Effects on Identity, Relationships and Communication
A couple of decades ago, kids may have had to deal with a bully on the way to school, but once they were home, the threat was usually gone. One’s bedroom could be an escape from the stares of classmates after an embarrassing incident, or a retreat after a difficult breakup. Social media now creates a 24/7 portal into student lives and can foster cyberbullying, gossip, and criticism. As students develop social skills, they don’t face the simple consequences of making a foolish comment to a small group of friends or having a bad hair day that just lives on in the memories of peers. Rather, they post comments and pictures (Instagram, Tumblr) that can live on for days and weeks and even years…or that disappear in seconds (Snapchat) or are posted anonymously (Whisper and Secret), removing relational accountability. In the past five years, the social lives of students have changed dramatically. This workshop will look at strategies for us as teachers, mentors and leaders to help ensure maximum health, safety and development for students in this new social terrain.
Defining Ethics for a New Generation
For many young people, doctrines such as relativism and toleration, under which they have been educated, have given them a different list of priorities than older generations. These doctrines present truth as doing what seems right in specific contexts (there has been a deconstruction of absolute moral truths that formally dictated ethical standards) and respecting the truths of others as valid, even if they differ from one’s own. An increased emphasis on being part of a community and team, being viewed as respectful and accepting of others, and avoiding offending or disappointing, often results in fluid ethical standards. Cheating on a test may be justified to please one’s parents or get a desired scholarship. Misrepresenting information may be seen as protecting colleagues or stakeholders. Does the definition of ethics need to be reexamined in light of new philosophies and changing worldviews? How should ethics be defined for a new generation of leaders?
Understanding Today's Students and Preparing Them for Success Tomorrow
This presentation delves into the powerful societal and technological influences contributing to the development of today's students. As the influences of culture shift our world from rational to experiential problem solving, technology moves us from linear to complex thinking, and collaboration replaces individual responsibility with evolving parenting and educational trends, students are learning in a world that has changed dramatically from what it was a few decades ago. The resulting shift in student behaviors and worldviews from older generations requires understanding and innovation for those educating the next generation. This session explores the opportunities and challenges represented by a new type of student and discusses strategies for equipping and empowering today's students for a strong future.
Maximizing Inter-generational Teams
With great potential for creativity and growth, inter-generational teams also produce frustration and misunderstanding as differing worldviews, work habits, and employee expectations collide. Millennials (age 20-35) now represent a large percentage of individuals on work teams and bring with them unique skills, perspectives and needs. Often differences in work ethic, communication styles, and vision on inter-generational teams result in poor employee satisfaction and retention. This workshop provides valuable insights into generational differences, and strategic tools to help you retain, engage and empower your employees of all ages!
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