Monday, January 19, 2009

Resonpse - Growing Up Online

For me, the ideas expressed by Steve Maher and Parry Aftab were the most relevant to our experiences as teachers. Media and technology is a huge part of our student’s lives, and it is a loosing battle to take a stance against it. It almost seems against the nature of culture today to exclude technology from education. The trick is using technology in a way that is beneficial to the students and the teacher.

Maher also made an excellent point about how remembering information is not as important as accessing and assessing information. Part of our responsibilities as teachers using technology in the classroom is to educate students on how to access and use information. Furthermore, if teachers are going to be using technology I think it is important to discuss moral and ethical issues as related to the internet. For example, what should be kept private vs. what should be public? What are good practices for using information found on the web? What is needed is an open and ongoing discussion between students, teachers, and parents about how they use the internet for both social and educational purposes.

I was also struck by something that Eve Skinner said in her follow-up interview. Eve questioned how the prevalence of technology in young peoples lives is affecting their sense of being in the moment; they are going through life as viewers and not as participants. It is now more important to record an event than partake in it. I think this issue is real, and needs to be addressed. How do we get students to reflect on the value of an experience as an active participant when it has become the norm to be a viewer?

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