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Generation Gap

Fear Mongering

Distance Ed

Flat World Fear-Mongering

"When I was growing up, my parents told me, 'Finish your dinner; people in China and India are starving for food.' Nowadays I tell my daughters 'Finish your homework; people in India and China are hungry for your job.'" (ad. from Thomas Friedman)

"If an unfriendly foreign power had attempted to impose on America the mediocre educational performance that exists today, we might well have viewed it as an act of war. As it stands, we have allowed this to happen to ourselves. We have even squandered the gains in student achievement made in the wake of the Sputnik challenge. Moreover, we have dismantled essential support systems which helped make those gains possible. We have, in effect, been committing an act of unthinking, unilateral educational disarmament." (1983 A Nation at Risk)

Other Big Idea Quotes

spokeo to look up info


Do you remember when the internet was something to "surf"? (PIC)... Now we interact with it, right? In fact I found some outdated language in our AUP just this spring prohibiting "interactive websites" (PIC of question mark) What's that about?

Mom, how do you open a coconut . . . if we don't provide the education, the kids will get it anyway, but not from the vendors we'd chosen.

Who does voicemail anymore?
phone line in first apartment?
watches TV all at the same time all over the city?

Paying Attention video: Are your students creating digitally? 
Show old-fangled pipe-talker

Have several planted audience members compete in an Arcademics game pitting one side against the other.
Create beforehand the instruction sheets for the gamers and the Google Docs folks.

Start the talk with Google earth and layers of pictures to introduce self.
Set up note takers in google doc

Let's face some facts about today
It's exhausting to keep up
Young people adopt more

Are you comfortable with the amount of tech that's available? Should we encourage broader and earlier adoption? I don't want my kids to grow up too fast online--it's still a little wild-westish for me (and that's from someone from the Oregon Trail).

Credit to Jeff Utecht, David Pogue, and all the others that I follow and who shape my thoughts.
Millenials Rising book--show on screen
Turn and Talk: What do you love about this generation?
Turn and Talk: How connected are your students?
Third turn and talk in an hour was too many. Should have stood up to share out our best idea with another group. 4 to a group for a task is too many. I intend to disappear.

Note taking during my talk on a Google Doc.

2005 Skype
2006 "myspace generation" Times Mag Cover Story

My kids feel the right to be always connected--even though in our family we don't have any data/3g plans. (Pic) My kids know we can take a laptop in the car, but it's confusing to them that we can't access the internet. I'm not entirely sure any of my kids remember ever seeing anything other than web-based applications.

Digital Immigrants
Hardware Generation--microwaves
Web Natives--all devices are connected, of course
Mobile Natives--will never buy a mouse

The world of Education can hire the best children's psychologists and motivational experts, but we'll hire them away from Webkinz Corp (PIC).  Interactive moment--what is good about how Webkinz works (the best teachers engineer similar circumstances in their classrooms--the rest of us scratch our heads and wonder how they have so much time to devote to it).  What's good (storyline, token economy, keep going forward or lose ground, empathetic connection, interpersonal competition, learning while playing.

Online Education
Disruptive Class, Sloan report 2009 80% of students will take a class online. Oregon law requiring a class to be taken online (Rachel). Jeff U tells the story of a principal looking at attendance reports and he'd lost 200 students. Where did they go? Half of them figured out they could go to college sooner if they went and did their classes online. The other half (bottom SES) figured out they could work full time and still get a diploma. Those 200 graduated but were not enrolled--the school lost enrollment. The principal did quick changes to adopt more online coursework because he realized that the next 200 kids he'd lose would be the ones realizing they could sleep in to 10 and still graduate high school.
BTW, you think the kids you're teaching will be here until they graduate and then go off to college. I suspect something else will happen to your high-achievers. I think they'll go through K-12, taking more and more of their coursework online as they go into the higher grades, and then they'll graduate. Parents will stand at the curb hoping to see their snookums driving away to college, but the kid will take their graduation-gift laptop (pic), head back into their bedroom, close the door, and enter college. Scary, huh?

"Defining the NEW Normal"
Get DVDs from Netflix: Growing up Digital, Star Trek, Real Genius
Anecdote from home . . .

I'm a little jealous because I see such disparity between the elementary, particularly early elementary, and secondary in terms of the need for systemic change. Secondary is where we see this (Real Genius) but we could see this (Star Trek). But my feeling is that sending our little ones off to learn to read and socialize in groups . . . that's too deeply ingrained in our collective psyche to allow much impetus for change.
So we have a different challenge, we who provide education at the "Tots" level. Our challenge is not how to reinvent the system, but how to continue to meaningfully interact with kiddos who are growing up in a diffferent world than we did . . . in fact growing up in a world that is different thn the one their older siblings grew up in!
My own kids represent a pretty narrow span--my Daughter, Anna, (PIC) just finished 4th grade and my two boys (PICS) just finished 2nd and 1st. Yes, we were a busy family with three very little kids for a while! Sanity, we welcome you.
Yet even with this narrow span, my Daniel (PIC CHANGE) has different expectations how how he relates to his world--all in the context of technology. He doesn't remember life before Netflix's red envelopes. Anna grew up just a couple of years before, and her proud parents VCR tape anecdote.
Remember the concerns that used to be voiced about how much time kids were spending passively watching TV? Are your kids still watching cable TV? Older kids aren't. (TV PIC) This is a trend that is working its way both upward and downward from the age 18. And the change is going faster than anyone expected.
Let me prove it to you. When was the first time you watched a TV show or a movie entirely on the internet? There are some people here who have never done that, though everyone has heard of it, right? Okay, try and figure out how many months ago that first streaming entertainment entered your life, and hold up that many fingers. If it was more than 10 months ago, just hold up 10 fingers. No taking off shoes. :)
For some of you, streaming your TV and/or Movies has gained some market share, some percentage of the way you consume media. (PIC of pie graphs). For others it was more of a novelty. The closer you are in age to 20, though, the more of your pie is likely to be internet-based media.
Now, I am not saying that about the younger a person is, because as kids get farther away from 20 in the other direction, the more they'll be watching DVD-based or cable programming. (RESEARCH in LAPINE).
Do you know any recent college graduates who went out to look for an apartment, and the first thing they did when they got into it was to get a telephone-line? Of course not! And though they may sign up for cable, it's to run their internet--the ability to turn on the TV is a side benefit. Chuckle--I'm imagining a 24-year old going to the TV to consult the Weather Channel to see what the weekend's weather is going to be.
Okay, will you give it to me that the ripples in the pond (PIC) seem to ripple out from that 20-year old range? We'll talk about readiness to adapt to new technology in a minute, but for actual adoption you'll find an 18 year olds using disruptive technology any day, while our Techno-tots are still using technology that their parents are more comfortable with.
And that makes sense, right? If your average parent of a 8-year old is 32--is that pretty average?--Then they are both some distance away from the epicenter of the tech adoptiveness earthquake. (PIC)
What does this mean? This means that it follows a very normal trend for my youngest to still prefer sticking in a DVD or a VHS tape (yes, we still have them, though none of the parents we know who are younger than us even bother with VHS tapes), while my daughter prefers to stream VeggieTales from Netflix.

Our kids will one day shake their heads in disbelief when we tell them the way we used to be--benighted in the dark ages of techno-infancy as we are. My own kids still cannot grasp why they can't keep playing their internet games (math games, because they're teachers' kids) (ARCDEMICS) when we go get in the car. When you first got a laptop, did you ask why it wouldn't do internet in the car? Our kids have higher expectations of technology than we do, and the closer they are to 20, the higher their expectations are. This is causing a real problem of disconnect in the middle and high school levels, because our systems are not set up to use as much technology as is expected. But as a kid's age decreases, so does his expectation in this area.
This may be a relief to some Kindergarten teachers. It may cause discomfort for some 3rd grade teachers. If we've got any 6th grade teachers in the room, please allow the discomfort to fester a little bit--this is serious stuff and it's only going to get worse.
Things that used not to be true . . . are now true. That's a totally lame thing to say, much less to put on a slide (PIC), but it's important because it relates to the future as well as the present. And it's important because our perception of truth tends to lag just a bit. Was it true five years ago that nearly 90% of Americans owned a personal computer? {PIC] Or that almost 70% of families with annual incomes below $25K owned a computer? [PIC]
Quick poll of the audience . . . when did those things become true? They are true now, btw, but when did they become true, if not five years ago? Talk with your neighbor and agree on a number between 0 and five to represent how many years ago it became true. .... Fact is, of course, that it was true 5 years ago. [PIC of research p38 rethinking tech]

Technology is like hand-me-downs EXCEPT that hand-me-downs stay at the same level perpetually. HMD princess dresses always fit 4-year-old girls. HMD T-Shirts, sweaters, and shoes always fit the kids of their age bracket. There's no such thing as second-grade HMD jeans or sneakers for boys, though. We were shocked when we went clothes shopping for our boys . . . nothing! Must be because boys don't outgrow their clothes--they destroy them! [PIC]
But back to HMD tech. When did it get to be that 8-year-olds are running around with handheld internet devices? The Nintendo DS used to be the domain of middle schoolers, then it worked its way down to the upper elementary, and now I'm finding them down among the little guys. That's not the way HMD clothes work. Or jokes, either. My kids are going through elementary school and finding some of the same jokes swimming around at the same levels as when I was a kid. Weird.
When high schools began to have trouble with cell-phone packing students (PIC), our middle school was cell phone free. It was a total non-issue. Both middle schoolers who had cell phones that year understood that they couldn't have phones on. The next year, the 8th graders had phones. It wasn't a 7th grade problem. Now the whole middle school has phones, but there are not many phones in 5th grade. Will it stabilize there? I'd sure like to hope so, but I wouldn't be surprised if the HMD phenomenon carried on down the line.

Now, obviously the cell phones in middle schools brought with them challenges. Managing students with technology was more of a challenge than managing students without technology, so we banned cell phones. Then came the sexting incidents--not something you hope to ever hear about at a Tots for Technology conference!

If I had to predict what kinds of technologies the 1st graders of 2014 would be used to using, I'd want to see what this year's 3rd graders are into.

I'm a high school teacher. This is my world. Please keep doing what you're doing at the tots level--don't feel bad that you're not doing what Jeff Utecht and I do in our classrooms, just help to get the kids ready to launch into our world. Thanks.

Pitfalls of Tech

What your Tots can look forward to in the coming years