By Janelle Yahne
Everyone has a little bit of geek in them nowadays. Many people have regular access to a computer, use the Internet, and probably played at least one video game. The Smithsonian American Art Museum even created a show about video games but that is a bit off subject. Today is the day to embrace this part of your being. There is a difference between nerds and geeks with both being pretty cool and here are some infographics for clarification. Both are considered a badge of honor now that popular culture has caught up to the niftiness as seen in the show “Big Bang Theory” (there is even a shirt for this). All of these things are fun portrayals.
Though we can talk about embracing geekness, we have to also comment on bullying. Bullying is a problem in the United States with periodic reports in the media showing the tragic results that may occur. It is a wonderful story to read about a bus monitor who is receiving support by the online community with donations, but it is a sad story that the woman had to deal with the ordeal. Some people who have grown up with a geek or nerd label, or any derogatory label, have probably felt the sting of bullies at one point in his/her life. It is important during this day of recognition that we remember to practice civility and to teach through example.I am planning on watching a few favorite episodes of Star Trek: TNG this weekend, but we have materials on bullying and really nifty graphic novels available in the library along with these interesting books to help you out:
Hanging Out, Messing Around, and Geeking Out: Kids Living and Learning with New Media, by Mizuko Ito – A great read to see how technology has become widespread and how much has been embraced by the current youth.
Unscientific America : How Scientific Illiteracy Threatens Our Future, by Chris Mooney and Sheril Kirshenbaum – Though not about pop culture geekness, science was traditionally part of the geek culture. An intriguing read about building student science knowledge and its importance.