Today’s learners have changed.
In our classrooms, however, our children are not free to use these tools in the same manner they do when they are elsewhere. There is a notion in traditional educational circles that they are distracted by them; that they are not conducive to learning and therefore must be banned. The truth is that when children and young adults use IT tools they communicate, learn, and share ideas and information in ways that were not possible using traditional learning/teaching techniques.
In fact, most of the content delivered in traditional ways in our schools today becomes irrelevant if we think that by the time JK students graduate from College or University there will be career choices that never existed when they started school. The total amount of knowledge available to these students will have multiplied several times over. They will face global challenges that were unheard of when they were in elementary school. Most of these issues are and will be impossible to tackle by the efforts of one single mind.
Are we preparing these students for the future? Are we empowering them with the necessary critical thinking skills that will allow them to switch careers several times in their most productive years? Are we giving them the tools to collaborate and share or are we simply forcing them to memorize and dig up content?