Thursday, December 30, 2010
"Growing Up Digitally"
The technology has created on campuses a new set of social types — not the thespian and the jock but the texter and gamer, Facebook addict and YouTube potato."
Also: "Escaping into games can also salve teenagers’ age-old desire for some control in their chaotic lives. “It’s a way for me to separate myself,” Ramon says. “If there’s an argument between my mom and one of my brothers, I’ll just go to my room and start playing video games and escape.”" Here's a problem I have with that: Teenagers all have their escape methods. It's just that society looks down on the technology-based ones, and doesn't have a problem with the others. All throughout my life, but especially in middle school, I would read as much as many play their video games. Does anyone have a problem with that? No. Reading is good for you. But video games? Oh no. There's a problem there.
See, I actually disagree. Reading to the degree that I did wasn't good for me. I had very few social connections in middle school. I hardly ever had friends over, and I hardly ever went over to anyone's house. I was miserable during those three years for a variety of reasons, so I picked up a book whenever I had a few seconds to spare. Is that healthy? No, it's not. (Note: much changed with the onset of high school. I'm a much happier person, and read considerably less than I did. Not to say that I don't read way more than the average teen.)
Another thing within this article that I found interesting was the study on whether or not video games or movies make for better recall of vocabulary words. Video games are more engaging, so we forget the boring vocab more easily.
I don't think the flaw here is with the video games. I think it's with the vocab. Why not combine the two? There's a school in NY entirely based around video games, and it's going very well.
Some people remember all of the different Pokemon, and all of their characteristics and powers/abilities, and all of their evolutions. Why? Because it's interesting, and knowing these things allow them to progress within the game. So this school applied that concept. The kids both play games, and do game-based projects within the classroom. There's an app for the iTouch and iPhone where your character levels up based on how many items on your real life to-do list you completed.
"“You can’t become a good writer by watching YouTube," I disagree. The YouTube videos I watch inspire me. The current project I'm working on would not have happened without YouTube. I would not be getting published without YouTube. Take that, English Teacher Lady. Your students just aren't watching the right channels on YouTube.
Kids will only pay attention when they find the material both interesting and relevant. How can you expect them to learn when they don't understand why they need to know it? I've been raised to value knowledge for knowledge's sake, but that doesn't go for everyone. Technology is unavoidable. We can't get rid of it. We will always use it.
So I say we change the medium of education instead.