most of the children and teens growing up in America. The integration of technology and education is following a far rockier road, however, and that is to the determent of those children whose future will require a comprehensive, practical understanding of the digital landscape. Many teachers and parents resist the fusion of the Internet with education; the teachers fear the emphasis on technology will limit their ability to teach effectively, while parents are more concerned with safety and the risk of promiscuity aided by technology. Proponents of a more robust technological education are divided as well, with some schools beginning to productively bring the virtual world into the classroom while others believe that simplify replacing physical items with their virtual counterparts is sufficient. The divide between the internal fractions of the “for” and “against” crowd mirror the disunion of the overall groups which are ultimately a reflection of the dichotomy between views of adults learning to adopt(adapt?) in an increasingly technological society and the children born into it.
The above is the thrust of Wong’s article “Digital Natives, Yet Strangers to the Web”. She details the failure of the education system to develop a curriculum to instruct children in digital citizenship, helping them move from mere consumers of information to productive members of the digital world. Some adults question the need and benefit for such a course which Wong uses to highlight the difficulty in educating the educator, so that they can proficiently instruct children. She ends noting ephemeral nature of modern technology; the rapid pace of change in tech does not align...
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...edge shared voluntarily and free in a format theoretically available to all,”(¶ 25) she makes it clear that we as a society cannot afford our teachers to let this valuable educational tool languish by the wayside.
Technology has encroached on ever facet of our lives and resisting it’s entry into education is as effective as the destruction of textile mills by the Luddites. The digitized world faced by current students opens up possibilities, and dangers, undreamt of by previous generations. It is the duty of educators to use technology in their classrooms but to show their students how to become productive members of this digital world. No longer can educators afford to be ignorant of technology. If educators are to lead a new generation into becoming netizens, competent in technology, its many applications, and cognizant of its risks, they must embrace technology.
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