Time to put the brakes on

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As soon as there’s a new kid on the block someone wants to deconstruct it and show us all the pitfalls.

“Young people of the digital native generation possess sophisticated knowledge of and skills with information technologies.”

The above quote from the Bennett,S.,Maton,K.,&Kervin,L. (2008) reading I find is too general and needs further clarification because we have two things going on here.  Whilst young people have the technical ability to be able to use these new technologies  they are seriously lacking in self-discipline in terms of the time and content they’re involved in.  Added to that is a lack of maturity to participate and conduct themselves online in an appropriate manner in what is a sophisticated form of communication.   Why might you ask has this happened?  In my opinion it’s the lack of educational support in using these

It would be interesting to see a recent survey of those students in America (referred to in the reading) how their online habits have changed,a lot can happen in two years in the digital world.  The thing about this type of learning for me is that it should make it easier for the teacher,more challenging for students and at the same time offering them opportunities for self-motivation,because they have a multitude of tools to use creatively to express themselves whether that be visually,through film,the written blog or data.

The lack of research as stated in this article around “how to design games that foster deep learning” could be given to students as a design brief.  Let them find a way,document their process and evaluate the journey.  Technologies move so fast nowadays,it’s about doing things in real time so we don’t stifle creativity and innovation.   This immediacy has caused frustration for some young people as observed by Eagleton,Guinee and Langlais(2003) with “students often making hasty,random choices with little thought and evaluation’.  For me this is just another example of the lack of literacy skills required to find the information,for had they correctly worded their online search or tried different search engines their results may have been quite different.

I agree with this reading that the gap may widen for those who do not have access to computer technologies and for that reason feel it is something that needs to be addressed.  There have been some great projects run in New Zealand like the Computer Club which reaches those in poorer socio economic areas.  I also agree with the lack of maturity and knowledge around how to communicate in a sophisticated manner,but if we wait for further research to be done before we initiate change in our schools we may well be failing our students.

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