Sharing and Collaboration

Readings and Reflection
This week we discussed Mark Prensky's article "Digital Natives, Digital Immigrants." For the most part we focused on the title and the terms "digital native" and "digital immigrant". What is a digital native or a digital immigrant? We discussed whether age was a factor in deciding whether you were a digital native or a digital immigrant or if it was completely dependent on technological skills. Prensky categorizes all students in today's schools as digital natives because they have grown up with technology, to Prensky age is a major factor. I agree with Prensky, children who have grown up with technology are Digital Natives. Digital Immigrants can be technologically savy but will never be digital natives because they have not grown up with technology.

New Software and How to Use It
This week we had the opportunity to "play" with a SMARTboard. Before class began, I was very excited to learn how to use a SMARTboard. However I quickly realized that they were not as fantastic as I had previously thought. A SMARTboard is an interactive whiteboard, when it was introduced it was the first whiteboard to provide touch control of computer applications. SMARTboards are interesting, easy to use and different compared to the plain old chalkboard
. They would be helpful in the classroom and fun to use but they do not promote the student-centered learning that digital natives require. A teacher is still at the front of the classroom, the only difference is that the teacher is using a SMARTboard instead of a chalkboard or an overhead projector. The SMARTboard is a "neat" addition to the classroom but is not the best type of technology to be integrated into the classroom.


What I have learned this week...

1. All students into today's schools are digital natives.
2. SMARTboards are interesting and easy to use.
3. Teachers need to incorporate more than one kind of technology in the classroom.