Monday, December 8, 2008

New Learners

"Education -- at school and on the job -- needs to be revamped to cater to young people who have grown up digital."

This quote, in the conclusion of this article is a conclusion that have come to in my life as well! Teaching is the one profession where it is NOT always mandatory to improve one's self regularly. Especially in the area of technology. In the article referenced earlier, the author talks about the need for a paradigm shift from the sage on the stage model of teaching. I could not agree more, but I seem to see the most resistance to this type of change!

Another article talks about how new technologies might be actually re-wiring the pathways in the brain and the ways that we learn. Could this be true? Should it really matter to educators? I guess on a scientific level it matters, but the reality of it is, that no matter the reason, we have generations of new learners coming through our doors. The second article likens what is happening now with the information revolution to the one that Socrates predicted with the introduction of the written word. The education world was no more ready for this revolution than it seems to be for the one we are in the midst of right now.

More than ever information is being published that talks of how digital natives learn differently, yet educators seem to be divided as to whether or not this is a real issue! How can those that promote education turn a blind eye to progress? Throughout history we have seen, mocked and lamented at how short sighted those in prominent positions in education were in the past with forward thinkers, yet there are still so many of us (educators)who still don't embrace change! It seems contradictory to me.

There is a new breed of learners out there and we as educators are obligated to change the paradigm along with these learners. We need to rise to the challenge and show that as learned individuals we are ready and able to accomodate new learners.

1 comment:

eric rowles said...

you nailed it brotherman - the ironic disconnect of "educators" using 20th century methods with a 21st century student. Kind of like trying to drive your car by giving it hay (think horse drawn carriage) for fuel. You can stuff it down the tank, but that don't mean it's going to make it go go go.... -