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Digital immigrant diary- Case study of a digital native (resident)


 I read quite a lot on how students of today have changed radically from the students of the past. Many blogs, slides on Slideshare and books  deal with this issue.  At ORT SA  I find myself “preaching” to teachers about the importance of ICT integration in education and taking into consideration these changes.

And, then, it caught on me in my own home…

Here is a conversation between my daughters that I would like to share with you

6 year old: “ Mom, I need a laptop”

Me: “Hmm”

6 year old : “ An Apple laptop mom”

Me: “Hmmmm”

12 years old: “ what do you need a laptop for?

6 year old in reply : “ I’m starting school next year, grade 1, Hello!”

12 years old in amazement: “exactly, so what do you need a laptop for?”

6 year old  “so I can do my homework and calculations, Daa..”

12 years old : “You don’t need your laptop for homework and definitely not for calculating”

So how do I calculate and work out staff?

With your brain?

And how do I rub staff?

“With eraser?



Grade one teachers, be prepared.  These are the children in your 2009 class:

·         Although they seem to be clued up with computers, they still need to acquire computer basic skills.  As, most of them have gained their skills mostly from computer games.

·         Their conception about computers is that computers can do nearly everything. Homework, calculations,  etc.

·         Many have played educational games and have learnt that learning is fun…

·         They can read better then previous grade 1 learners did (in SA writing and reading starts mostly at Grade 1)  and are able to type (as many games required them to type their names and they learn to type URLs)

·         These  learners live in a world where information grows exponentially

·         They may have jobs that didn’t exist when they were born

How do we as teachers accomodtae these changes and how do we parents prepare them for a future filled with challenges and opportunities? Feel free to add your comments, feedback and suggestions.