"Amish Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)." LancasterPA.com. https://lancasterpa.com/amish/amish-frequently-asked-questions/. This website is useful for researching the Amish vision of utopia.
Anderson, M. T. Feed. Walker Books, 2013. This popular young adult novel takes place in a world where people have continuously playing feeds fed into their brains by a computer chip.
"Are You Hooked on Your Phone?" Junior Scholastic Magazine. https://junior.scholastic.com/issues/2017-18/031218/are-you-hooked-on-your-phone.html#1160L. This is a leveled article appropriate for middle school use.
Blake, Jillian. Antisocial. Ember, an Imprint of Random House Children's Books, 2018. This teen novel takes place in a Prep School that has its own app, which it turns out recorded everyone’s texts and search histories. A few students manage to hack into it, exposing private information which creates chaos out of everyone’s social lives and results in the suicide of a popular athlete.
Bowles, Nellie. "Human Contact Is Now a Luxury Good." The New York Times. March 23, 2019. https://www.nytimes.com/2019/03/23/sunday-review/human-contact-luxury-screens.html. This short article is useful for noting the class differential in the use of robotics.
Bradbury, Ray. Timeless Stories for Today and Tomorrow. Bantam Books, 1961. This anthology has other science fiction stories which may be of interest to some students.
Bradbury, Ray. The Veldt: A Creative Classive. Creative Education, 1987. This clairvoyant short story tells of an interactive virtual reality room which the children of the family become addicted to and results in the death of their parents.
Collins, Suzanne. The Hunger Games. Scholastic, 2009. This classic dystopian novel is familiar to most students and can be a source for examples when discussing dystopian societies and literature.
"The Distracted Teenage Brain." CommonLit. https://www.commonlit.org/texts/the-distracted-teenage-brain. This article describes a research study showing how teenagers find situations that once provided rewards distracting even if the situations no longer provide the rewards.
"Don't Remember Sending That Text? Maybe You Were Sleep Texting." Newsela. https://newsela.com/read/sleep-texting/id/47853/. An interesting phenomenon presented in a format and level apporpriate for middle school students.
"History of the Shakers." Shaker Heritage Society. http://home.shakerheritage.org/history-shakers/. A website useful for researching Shaker history.
Holcombe, Stacy. Culture Clashes: Utopia vs.Dystopia. Teachers Pay Teachers, 2017.This is an interesting analysis for teachers and students of dystopian literature.
"Hutterites." Hutterites. http://www.hutterites.org/. This website provides basic information on the Hutterites.
"Hutterites." Peaceful Societies. https://cas.uab.edu/peacefulsocieties/societies/hutterites/. These websites are useful for the students in researching Hutterite and Shaker history.
"John Lennon – Imagine." Genius. October 11, 1971. https://genius.com/John-lennon-imagine-lyrics. This song will provide an excellent brief way to discuss the concept of utopia.
Katsoulis, Gregory Scott. All Rights Reserved. Harlequin Books, 2017. In this dystopian novel people are made to pay for every word they use. The society is virtually run by advertising commercial products. The protagonist, Speth, rebels by refusing to talk when it is her turn to come of age.
Losse, Kate. "The False Promise of Silicon Valley's Quest to Save the World." The New Republic. February 07, 2019. https://newrepublic.com/article/153034/false-promise-silicon-valleys-quest-save-world. This article was used to research the early utopian vision of digital technology developers.
McGee, Katharine. The Thousandth Floor. Harper, an Imprint of HarperCollins Publishers, 2016. This fascinating novel, which is the first in a series, takes place in a hierarchical society where the rich live in the upper levels of a tower which takes up most of Manhattan. The complex characters’ lives are influenced by artificial intelligence in a multitude of ways, and there are some captivating details such as couches in a sky-lit room that change colors to match the sky, and a ‘bubble lounge’ where drink float around in bubbles that you can stick your straw into.
"Meet Your Competition." Junior Scholastic Magazine. https://junior.scholastic.com/pages/archives/articles/meet-your-competition.html#1190L. This middle school level article provides statistics on jobs that are at risk of being replaced by technology and also information and what new jobs may be created.
More, Thomas. Utopia: Thomas More. Feather Trail Press, 2010. Only a small portion of this text is used in this unit as most of the reading would be too difficult for middle school students.
"One Group Says Apple's Devices May Be Hurting Kids in the Long Run." Newsela. https://newsela.com/read/apple-phone-kids/id/39478/. This text presents retired teachers and Apple board members who have written to Apple requesting more safeguards to prevent overuse by young users.
"Opposing Innovation." CommonLit. https://www.commonlit.org/en/texts/opposing-innovation?search_id=21967973. A nonfiction article appropriate for middle school students on the Luddites.
Price, Catherine. How to Break up with Your Phone. Ten Speed Press, 2018. A self help book appropriate for both teens and adults trying to gain control of their social media use.
"Someone Might Be Watching - An Introduction to Dystopian Fiction." CommonLit. https://www.commonlit.org/en/texts/someone-might-be-watching-an-introduction-to-dystopian-fiction?search_id=22462588. This text succinctly points out the history of and common attributes of dystopian fiction.
Stone, Tamara Ireland. Click'd. Disney-Hyperion, 2017. This is a book for younger students about a 6th grader who goes to a special coding camp and designs a fun social media game. However, the game has a glitch where it copies and shares people’s personal photos that gets the protagonist into trouble.
"Teen Suicide Rates Rising, Study Says Social Media Use Could Be a Factor." Newsela. https://newsela.com/read/teen-suicide-social-media/id/37768/. This is a good article to use when presenting the negative effects of digital social media on teens.
"Texting Can Be a Positive and Powerful Force, Experts Say." Newsela. https://newsela.com/read/texting-can-be-positive/id/44958/. A nonfiction article appropriate for 8th grade.
Thefarmcommunity.com. http://thefarmcommunity.com/. A website useful for students researching The Farm community in Tennessee.
Vonnegut, Kurt. Harrison Bergeron. Mercury Press, 1961. In this classic, complex story everyone in society must be handicapped so they are equalized. The gifted main character rebels again this to express himself, sacrificing his life.
Walker, Karen Thompson. The Age of Miracles. Scribner UK, 2019. In this atypical dystopia earth’s revolution around the sun has slowed and continued to slow, changing virtually everything about life as we know it and eventually bringing down digital technology. It does an excellent job of showing how teens cope with the slow apocalypse.
Wang, Corrie. The Takedown. Freeform Books, 2018. This book takes place among upper class teens at a private school in Brooklyn. A popular girl is the victim of cyberbullying with a photoshopped video and few believe her that the video of her having sex with a teacher is fake. The digital technology is only slightly more advanced than what we presently have.
"Watch Out: Cell Phones Can Be Addictive." CommonLit. https://www.commonlit.org/en/texts/watch-out-cell-phones-can-be-addictive. An article appropriate for teens about behavioral addiction to cell phones.
"Why Wait?" Wait Until 8th. https://www.waituntil8th.org/why-wait. The website which explains the movement to wait until 8th grade to give children smart phones.
"You (Time Person of the Year)." Wikipedia. May 27, 2019. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/You_(Time_Person_of_the_Year). Article on the famous Time magazine cover depicting a computer screen.
Alter, Adam L. Irresistible: The Rise of Addictive Technology and the Business of Keeping Us Hooked. Penguin Books, 2018. This adult level text explains behavioral addiction and how it applies to technology.
"English Language Arts Standards » Reading: Literature » Grade 8." English Language Arts Standards » Reading: Literature » Grade 8 | Common Core State Standards Initiative. http://www.corestandards.org/ELA-Literacy/RL/8/. This was used as the source for Common Core Literacy standards which are used in Connecticut.
Rosen, Larry D. IDisorder: Understanding Our Obsession with Technology and Overcoming Its Hold on Us. Palgrave Macmillan, 2012. This books goes through the major psychiatric disorders showing how each may be caused in a particular manifestation through the overuse of technology.
Shelley, Mary Wollstonecraft, D. L. MacDonald, and Kathleen Scherf. Frankenstein, Or, The Modern Prometheus: The 1818 Version. Broadview Press, 1994. This text was used as the source for Godwin’s comments on technology; he was Mary Shelley’s father.
Small, Gary W., and Gigi Vorgan. IBrain: Surviving the Technological Alteration of the Modern Mind. William Morrow, 2009. This husband and wife team discuss the physiological and psychosocial impact of constant digital device use by our youth.
Steiner-Adair, Catherine, and Teresa Barker. The Big Disconnect: Protecting Childhood and Family Relationships in the Digital Age. Harper, 2014.
Trust, Torrey. "Why Do We Need Technology in Education?" Journal of Digital Learning in Teacher Education 34, no. 2 (03, 2018): 54-55. doi:10.1080/21532974.2018.1442073. This was used as a reference for the positive effects of digital technology.
Twenge, Jean M. IGEN: Why Today's Super-Connected Kids Are Growing up Less Rebellious, More Tolerant, Less Happy-- and Completely Unprepared for Adulthood (and What That Means for the Rest of Us). Atria Books, 2017. This book analyzes a wealth of data regarding regarding children, adolescents, and adults and theorizes regarding causal relationships between digital use and behavior.