To my new BFF:
I found you on Fritter, and I wanted to let you know that I will add you to my You Cube very soon. In the meantime, could you send me a picture of someone else because I do not actually want to see you.
I say this, because I really am not interested in communicating with anyone who found me on a website and decided that I am the only person they can relate to without meeting me, without knowing what I stand for, or without knowing if I am really an awful person. I happen to know it is called Twitter, which is as good a name as Fritter; and You Tube, which seems to make as little sense as You Cube. I know that members of Congress seem to be absorbed in abusing the process and that some students believe that meaningful relationships can be formed with perfect strangers.
I am of the old school. I believe that I can tell more about a person from actually meeting them face to face. Maybe we should call this “literally meeting face to face” as opposed to Twittering or Facebooking. If you give two children a math problem in a class where they are physically together, studies (which I truly believe) show that they will solve it in a third of the time it would take them to solve the problem if they were only connecting through a computer, even if they were “Skyping” each other. I believe that is because our face gives away a lot about what we are thinking in the most subtle ways, ways that even a computer cannot pick up.
Yes, I am aware that I am out of touch. However, I want to be in touch (mentally), and so I actually meet people (physically). I try to meet every student and parent who applies to York Prep. I don’t know what I am looking for, but I feel that whatever it is, I am more likely to connect if I have a face-to-face interaction rather than using any other methodology science can offer. As I said, I am of the old school.
I am impressed by the wordage of websites: Google, Zappos, Microsoft—clever words chosen because some marketing team thought we would remember them. I am sure they are right. I do remember them, and now they are part of our everyday language. I applaud the inventors who are clearly very smart people. And I like to use my computer because I can erase my mistakes more easily when I type. I never liked the old Wite-Out stuff you had to smear across the page. (You younger readers will not know what I am talking about.) I like being able to photocopy and do not miss the purple stained fingers that resulted from mimeograph copies. I even like overhead projectors, although I do not use PowerPoint when I teach because I think everyone stares at the screen; frankly, I would rather they stare at me. I want them to get those subtle signals I talked about in the last paragraph.
So, my new best friend, I will not join your site, I will not reveal any details of my life; I will not reply to your request to be my new best friend. So sry, LOL
Ronald P. Stewart, Headmaster
“Headmaster’s Thoughts” for previous months are archived in the section More News. You may access additional months by clicking Headmaster’s Thoughts Archives on the same page.