Teacher’s classroom experiment goes viral globally; most valuable lessons kids will learn

A well-meaning sixth-grade teacher from Tulsa, Okla., wanted to teach her students about posting inappropriate material on social media, and ended up learning an important lesson herself, according to NBC’s “Today” show.

When Emerson Elementary School teacher Melissa Bour went on Facebook to show her math and science students how quickly photos and links can spread, she was even surprised by what she found.

“I noticed more and more pictures were showing up that were inappropriate,” Melissa told “Today.” “So I used a teachable moment. I got out a piece of computer paper and a green pen, and I wrote a little note.”

This is the note Bour shared on her Facebook page:

Photo Credit / fox23.com

“My 12-year-old students think it is ‘no big deal’ that they are posting pictures of themselves in bras or with their middle finger in the air,” the note said. “Please help me out by sharing this image and commenting with where you live to show these young students how quickly their images can get around.”

The letter quickly went viral, showing up in every U.S. state and even in foreign countries like Saudi Arabia, Germany and Australia.

Teachable moment
Photo Credit / Video Screenshot

The lesson made its impact. Bour’s students said the experience showed them that what they do online now could haunt them years later.

“I’m not going to put any more photos on my Facebook, and I’m not going to comment on anything that I like or dislike,” Peyton Piguet told “Today.”

Fellow student Xavier Ingram agreed.

“Say I want to be the president,” Ingram said. “That might affect me becoming president.”

The lesson continues to reverberate.

Even though Bour deleted the original shortly after posting it earlier this month, copies are still in circulation on social medial.


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