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Using Internet Browsers and Email

Using Internet Browsers and Email Activity: Media Map: What's Up With Your Internet Usage?

Instructions for Your Students

Digital media is 24/7 and uber social, as you and your 550 Facebook friends might know. The Internet plays a big role in your life, but have you ever thought about just how much time you spend with this not-so-gentle giant? 

Take a moment away from your texts, tweets, and status updates to map out your media comings and goings, and get the scoop from your friends too. Get ready to think about—and maybe even reconsider—what u up 2.

Step 1: Chat (briefly) with your teacher and the rest of your class about how much time you spend online. We're just looking for a ballpark figure here. How often do you think you check Facebook? How many hours do you spend "plugged in" each week? That kind of stuff.

Step 2: Break into pairs. Your teacher is going to give everyone a copy of out "Media Map Interview" handout. Once you and your partner have yours, go ahead and interview each other about your media usage.

Stop once you've finished question #10! We'll get to #11 in a minute. 

Step 3: As a full group, talk about what you learned. You can talk about your own Internet usage or your partner's. Here are some possible discussion questions:

  1. How did the estimates from question #1 about how much time you/your partner spent online compare to the more detailed results from question #10?
  2. Were you surprised by how much time you/your partner spent online?
  3. How did your Internet usage compare to your partner's?
  4. If you interviewed an adult instead of a student your age, how would their results be different? 
  5. Were you surprised by any of the places or devices your partner used to connect to the Internet?
  6. What's the difference between how you use text messaging versus emails?

Step 4: All right. Time for #11. You may need to use your cell phone or computer calculator for this one. And if you need help, ask for it. 

Step 5: Back to the big group for one more discussion. Go ahead and share your results from question #11. As people own up to their totals, you may want to discuss (or at least consider) the following questions:

  1. What, exactly, are you doing with those [# of average hours] you spend online every week? What activities did you or your partner spend the most time on?
  2. Did any of your findings surprise you? 
  3. Are you considering using your time differently? How? Why?