the Information Generation

Saturday, January 1, 2011 at 5:31 pm

It's not on - what do I do now?

You may well be suicidal - and it isn't even on!

I’m in the middle of marking work and I keep coming across students who say that they are writing about something when they clearly mean to say “and here is a quotation from … [name of website]”.

Last year I heard a teacher say in a radio interview that students can find information better than any previous generations, “… they can get as much knowledge (sic) as they want.”

Woman’s Hour – 16 April 2010 – re. “The information Generation”

I don’t think they can – I don’t think many students can distinguish between so-called “information” and “knowledge”.   It has become something of a cliché to refer to the “cut and paste” generation, but that is often literally the case – the information is transferred from screen to screen but it never goes through the brain and is not processed to any noticeable extent by the student.

We might argue that it is then latent in the student memory.   My experience is, however, that because information is available on-line, then the majority of students do not commit facts or information to memory – and worse – they do not even consider the meaning or the importance of the information and it does not, therefore, get processed into real knowledge. Even the knowledge of where the information can be sourced is not registered, because it can so easily be “googled” again – or so they think.

So is it worth considering whose fault this is – and how we can try to redress the balance?

Categories: UKEducation

Setting up this site

Monday, December 27, 2010 at 11:50 pm

I have to say this must be one of the most non-intuitive programs I’ve come across – or the biological process is starting to get to me. Is it possible to remove categories from the sidebars? Haven’t found it yet.

Categories: SiteBuilding

Cheers! Whatever happened to “Thank you”?

Wednesday, December 22, 2010 at 8:16 pm

Am I the only one who gets fed up with hearing young people and others saying “Cheers” when even “thanks” would be a more acceptable substitute?

I took my daughter a cup of tea in bed this morning and she couldn’t even open her eyes – but she managed to groan “cheers”. I suppose I’m just grateful that she said something and didn’t just take it for granted.

In my day job as a teacher I also find that more and more young people use “cheers” as their normal mode of saying thank you. I find it excessively casual and off-hand. It grates on me and I wonder just what their parents say at home.

Good of you to have the patience to read this, though.   Chee Thank you. J.

Categories: Language, theEnglishLanguage, UKEducation

Introduction

Tuesday, December 21, 2010 at 8:40 pm

Welcome to this site – comments about education, about our current woes and also about current attitudes in the UK and Europe in the 21st Century.

The post-crisis gloom seems not to be shared by the majority of the population, many of who seem to be able to see themselves as above and outside the problems discussed in the news media.  Perhaps we are as a nation – or as the peoples of the western world – too numbed by our material world to feel anything but withdrawal symptoms when we are unable to gain further access to our toys.

Categories: Uncategorised