The digital world is growing every day with technology becoming more easily accessible. Whether it is for work or play, there is a device or program for just about everything.
We no longer live in one world consisting of family, friends and town. Rather, we live in multiple worlds; our digital worlds. Friends on social media, games and work are some examples. Technology instantly connects us to the other side of the world.
According to the Australian Bureau of Statistics, in 2015 7.7 million households in Australia had access to the internet. That is 86% of the population. The average amount of time that a person spends on the internet a week is 10 hours. (Households With Internet Access at Home, 2016)
Laura Gallo states “Teens are sharing more than words over instant messaging. They are sharing photos, links, music and videos.” (Gallo, 2013). She goes on to say that teenagers are using this technology to express who they are and that not many young people are willing to give up their mobile devices.
This makes things hard whe
n students come into school and do not have access to their digital worlds.
“One of the strangest things in this age of young people’s empowerment is how little input our students have into their own education and its future.” (Prensky, 2008).
Students in today’s society have a lot of control over their lives. Outside of school they are able to make their own decisions while when they are at school they have little in the way of control. (Prensky, 2008). With the aid of digital worlds, students have become increasingly fluent in the use of technology. Many teachers who are not so fluent in the use of technology tend to steer clear. A student in Albany, New York stated:
“If it’s the way we want to learn, and the way we can learn, you should let us do it.” (Prensky, 2008)
Teachers should begin to incorporate new technologies into their teaching to engage and excite their students. A possible way for teachers to begin is by including something that the students know how to use then learning from them. This gives the students a sense of responsibility as well as allowing the teacher to learn alongside their students. (Howell, 2013)
Gallo, L. (2013). Living in a Digital World. Retrieved from IowaNow The Univercity of Iowa: https://now.uiowa.edu/2013/06/living-digital-world
Households With Internet Access at Home. (2016, 02 18). Retrieved from Australian Bureau of Statistics: http://www.abs.gov.au/ausstats/abs@.nsf/mf/8146.0
Howell, J. (2013). Teaching With ICT.
Peter, I. (n.d.). The History of Email. Retrieved from Net History: http://www.nethistory.info/History%20of%20the%20Internet/email.html
Prensky, M. (2008). The 21st Century Digital Learner. Retrieved from Edutopia: http://www.edutopia.org/ikid-digital-learner-technology-2008