Marc Prensky wrote in his article about the idea that people born and raised during times where they grew up with technology are more adaptable to technology, more reliant on it, and learn vastly differently than generations who were raised without it. Even stating that brains have developed differently, and whilst it can be true that newer generations have shorter attention spans or different methods of learning, its something that Marc Prensky describes as a complete fact, that applies to every single person. Which whilst not true, as there are 50-60 Year old people capable of adapting and using technology in a similar way to newer generations, It is still quite accurate, with a majority following the general trend set by digital native and immigrants.

Marc Prensky’s solution towards the issue of education, being that it is Digital immigrants teaching Digital natives, is that the immigrants adapt to change and teach in a more fast paced way, stating ideas like “The professors had made 5-10 minute movies to illustrate key concepts; we asked them to cut them to under 30 seconds” The general idea behind it may seem quite difficult to achieve, but its understandable that it be cut to 30 seconds, so that the newer target audience, who as Prensky mentions multiple times, prefer quick, spontaneous learning, allowing them to understand it quickly and get a general idea quickly rather than a complete mastery over a long period of time.

Prensky states that “Our goal was to completely eliminate any language that even Smacked of education.” The idea would make sense to most digital natives, who would obviously abhor the idea of long, unnecessary work when a simple, quick montage will suffice, it only makes sense when viewing it from a non-educational view point. students who have lived with fast paced content, like on demand TV streaming, Video games that can be started and stopped in an instant, and music playlists that you can handpick any song from and in any order, its no wonder that modern students disapprove of older, almost ‘ancient’ methods. I mean, we’ve had pen and paper since way before the 20th century, are students really expected to not move on to more efficient methods. The method that students are educated shouldn’t stay the same forever, especially with the rate that technology is advancing nowadays, are people really expecting students to be writing learning objectives and long pages of notes on A4 paper in the year 2100? No, as the nature of education has to change, and it just so happens to be changing now.

Moreover, the adaptability of digital immigrants is not something to be underestimated, as it is important to note the changes that they have made to aid modern students, such as using Quick, summarizing slideshows over long textbook pages, or the fact that videos are used in entertainment at all is something for them to be proud of. At the very least, there is some change in education, which will make the full shift towards a more modern style of learning more feasible.

His argument stands strong, especially in the context of Dulwich, where teachers in IB are using Onenote notebooks, digital tasks, as well as encouraging students to “bring your own device” with BYOD, you can guess what it stands for. I think Dulwich does a relatively good job at teaching Digital Natives

A majority of parents at Dulwich would be digital immigrants, mainly those above 50, due to the majority of technological advancement and standardization occurred during their lifetime.

There are a few issues with Marc Prenskys ideas, but in my opinion they do not damage the authenticity of them. Firstly it is likely that Digital immigrants would have their jobs replaced by Digital natives if they became more efficient at teaching, with job losses being a poignant social issue related to IT Systems. Another issue is the cost of changing the education system, if instead of a pen and paper, schools had to provide a laptop or tablet, would all schools be able to provide this?

Presnky’s general idea is quite solid, complimented by his sound solutions and helpful advice. His entire article gives a great description of what being a Digital native or immigrant means, and even pokes fun at both groups. I wouldn’t be surprised if any methods of learning that Prensky mentioned in the article become commonplace in education in a few years time, and honestly, that would make education far more fun and engaging, something that some schools and teacher may deem unnecessary. Overall it’s a great article and its points are useful and thought out, though it is ironic that we were given the article printed out on an A4 Sheet.

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