I admit – it is very hard to reconcile how quickly our younger generation can access information while we often trudged ourselves to the library, searched for that elusive microfiche only to find that the day the article was published, wasn’t available. So are you upset that the children we teach will never feel quite the same frustration? Or is it more because it feels that our generation’s time was dedicated to information retrieval instead of information evaluation, application and creation? Frustrating because children are retrieving information more quickly than we can process. We must move away from farming content towards processing it for consumption! Think about moving away from the industrial perspective into the informational.
I know.. it hurts..
It’s no longer excusable for anyone to say “Do it the way we did it! That’ll teach ya some gumption! And you’ll feel more satisfied if you worked hard for your answer!”
You see? As educators, given the exponential growth of student knowledge or more importantly their access to it, we should concern ourselves less with the speed of information gathering and more with its processing and application. Believe you, me – the role of the teacher is more important now than ever before. We will finally be teaching the most crucial skill in our arsenal – that skill of critical thinking.
If we do not pass this skill on we will inadvertently create a generation of placid learners and surely doom intellectual growth – or relegate it to the very few free thinkers. It’s a lot like watching a movie with your eyes closed… almost impossible to do because your brain is conditioned to depend on someone else’s visualization of a story… think about it.
Educators should look at the demise of personal traditions right in the eye and skim the best part of those traditions off the top.
It’s not enough to hunt for the information – the rules of the hunt have changed and more importantly, the prize has changed. The hunt itself has lost its luster and the time spent on it should now be used to process, critique and apply information.