Prêt à Enseigner (Ready to Teach)

A funny thing happened when some teenaged boys stole my iPhone at my local Pret... 

I started thinking about "why" the kids did it.

At first I was curious...

Did they feel they needed the money? Was it fun? Were they bored?

And then I went to a darker place...

If they got caught, what would happen to them? Would they enter the prison system? If they did, would they ever get out?

And then I got kind of heated about it...

Why don't people believe in teens? Are teens working anymore? Can they even get a job at Subway? How can we expect them to enter into society with any wherewithal if we don't teach them what they need to know? How can we expect kids to transition into adulthood without introducing them to realistic career options? It was hard enough for me and my peers. I can only imagine how large the gap will get by the time this generation graduates high school or college.

Clearly, I had a lot of feelings on the subject, so I decided to do something about it. I started to think about what I know how to do that might be valuable to teens, and I landed on social media marketing. Teens definitely already know how to use social media for their own purposes, but maybe it is time to teach them how and why brands use social media to sell more product. That's a valuable skill, right? 

I consulted with my friend Emily, a former teacher who now does communications and social media for an education startup, and we came up with the idea for a course for teens called Social Media Marketing (In Real Life), also referred to as #SMIRL. The workshop is a 4-session crash course in marketing analysis, through a social lens. We work with students to deconstruct popular campaigns, and then encourage them to create their own.


The program is currently in progress at Achievement First Endeavor Middle School in Clinton Hill, Brooklyn. We are seeking volunteers and additional school partners for future sessions. Please email me if interested. We would love to hear from you!