The Generation Of The 21st Century Student Essay

The Generation Of The 21st Century Student Essay

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The 21st century student is a generation that has grown up with some form of technology always available for their use. Therefore earning them the nickname the digital natives. This technology includes computers, IPads, internet, mobile phones, and video games. They are becoming increasingly comfortable using these technologies for interacting with information and each other. The manner in which new information and communication technologies are being used suggests that children today are creating understands and knowledge in new and different ways. Such knowledge is reflective of constructivist understanding about how humans learn (Spires, Lee, Turner, and Johnson, 2008). Constructivism is closely tied to progressivism and is based on the work of Piaget and Vygotsky. When practiced in the classroom, it allows students to be active in their learning environment to construct knowledge. Programs that follow constructivism should be based on inquiry or discovery learning that promote student-centered teaching and learning.
The new forms of digital interaction, expression, communication and entertainment (Shelly, Gunter and Gunter 2010) have led teachers to rethink their traditional teaching practices (Wiske, 2004). Prensky (2001) claims that when planning lessons, teachers have ignored “digital natives”, who are accustomed to playing computer games and who are skilled in multitasking, parallel processing, graphic awareness, and random access (Thota and Negreiros, 2015). Teachers need to adapt their techniques and integrate technology in their curriculum to meet the challenges of educating “digital natives” and dismiss such claims. Dockstader (1999) states several important reasons for integrating technology: (a) correctly...


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...ation system must adapt. Teachers need to learn how to use technology and implement it to spark students’ interest in school. Curriculum plans need to include technology that will allow for students to enhance their cognitive skills. We must allow students to stay connected to the information system that they have become so dependent on. Teachers need to implement technology because it can address students’ diverse needs, from both low and high level learners, because it provides meaningful context (Spires, Lee, Turner, and Johnson, 2008). Furthermore, utilizing technology that will keep parents connected with teachers are key elements to students’ education. This technology may be the bridge necessary to fill the gap of busy parents with work commitments, those who can’t speak English or those parents who just don’t know how to help their students in school.


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