Sunday, January 9, 2011

Reflection Post

When I chose the book The Dumbest Generation, How the digital Age stupifies Young America and Jeopardizes our Future, I thought that the book wouldn't be as strong in language as it was. I was astounded at the harsh terminology of the book the Bauerlein wrote. It hit rather close to home given that I am a high school teacher and all. I do agree with some of the items that were listed in the book, such as when he talks about how the average 10 year olds room looks like a multimedia center. This is so true. I have a young nephew who will be 4 this month and it seems that he is more technology savvy than I am. I was disappointed in that he really didn't offer much in the way to encorporate what is going on. It was pretty much dissing on the current generation. All in all I enjoyed the book and am not disappointed in spending the time reading it.

Saturday, January 8, 2011

Reflection Post

In the book The Dumbest Generation, I was surprised to read about how Bauerlein believes technology is making students “dumber”. I agree with some of his opinions but have a difficult time understanding others. The digital tools are reshaping our world and the older generations are having a difficult time with the change. Bauerlein believes that technology is not letting students learn and think on their own. I agree that websites like Facebook and My Space have no educational value. I am also concerned because students are spending the majority of their time on these sites instead of reading a book or writing complete sentences. I am also concerned about the students that are unable to spell because they are so use to spell check. I am afraid to say that the times when students needed to open a book and write on a piece of paper is becoming more and more rare. Many people use computers everyday to do their work, communicate, fill out resumes, research information, etc. Also people are using Kindles/computers instead of a books and newspapers to read information. I think, as an educator, we need to be more aware and accepting of the changes in technology. I believe that if educators related more of their assignments to the internet the students would be more willing to complete them. As an educator, I plan on using a variety of technologies in my classroom to help stimulate student’s interest and keep current with all the changes. I will also be more aware of some of Bauerlein’s concern with the change in technology. I believe that having a mixture of technology and “traditional” ways of teaching is the most effective way to reach many of the students.

Tuesday, December 21, 2010

Deb's Summary Post

After reading “The Dumbest Generation-How the Digital Age Stupefies Young Americans and Jeopardizes Our Future” by Mark Bauerlein, I have a new opinion concerning technology and this generation. I don’t agree with everything that Bauerlein wrote about, but agree he does make some good points. The digital age was supposed to make gaining information easier and thus increase student achievement. Bauerlein repeatedly states facts that go against this statement. He said, “The enhancements and prosperities claimed to turn young Americans into astute global citizens and liberated consumers sometimes actually conspire against intellectual growth.” (Pg. 36) The example he used to describe this statement was, “A middle-class teenager may attend a decent high school and keep a B+ average, pack an iPod and a handheld, volunteer through his church, save for a car, and aim for college, and still not know what the Soviet Union was or how to compute a percentage.” (Pg. 36)
Unfortunately, I see this happening with my own children. They have learned how to use the technology available to them to socialize with friends, watch movies, and listen to music. What they haven’t learned it how to use it correctly for gathering information. My oldest son is in his first year of college and graduated from a high school that was involved with the laptop program. He has had to submit his assignments electronically for 4 years. Now in a college situation, he is unable to write a rough draft for his English class. He struggles with expanding his thoughts and getting them on paper, but he can download any type of program needed to stay in touch with his peers.
Bauerlein goes on to explain the 2006 report called “How Well Are Students Learning” on page 195. The basic summary of this report states, “Countries with more confident students who enjoy the subject matter—and with teachers who strive to make mathematics relevant to students ‘daily lives—do not do as well as countries that rank lower on indices of confidence, enjoyment, and relevance.“(Pg. 195) What this tells me is that everything that we are asking our public education teachers to do to increase student success and promote that connection to real world aspects, is lowering this group of young adults chance to be a great addition to society, compared to other countries. That’s sad. Students need to learn independence and work habits in order to succeed. We need to step back and reevaluate whether the digital age technology is being an assistive device or a threat to the education of our students.