Tuesday, July 5, 2011
Luddites on Parade
I'm not sure how we are supposed to do this, but I just finished iBrain Chapter 1 and want to get it out there. Sorry if I'm stepping on anyone's toes. Frankly, as a concerned "Digital Immigrant and " I found the chapter to be very interesting and confirmed some of the observations that I have had in class regarding the "digital natives". Its good to know that there is researched positive affects of the digital era. When people debate evolution vs creationism, what gets lost in the conversation is the idea that evolution continues...there is no stopping point. So naturally the idea that our environmental inputs - digital age - would have an impact on our neural wiring. I am very concerned about our social skills. My wife signed me up a few months ago for Facebook. Its great and nice, but I still miss in person contact. My parents moved here in 1986 and I remember people always stopping by or vice versa. That doesn't happen anymore. Even though I live in the town I grew up in, I rarely have people stop by for a beer and conversation and my wife and I don't reciprocate. My students don't wait. They barge into conversations with other people to inject their own unrelated requests or statements. These are interpersonal skills that are being lost. I believe that some of this behavior comes from the "chatting" with multiple people, each in their own window....you don't have to be polite in that environment. I also see the continuous partial attention. It becomes additive for the kids. They have to know whats going on and have 30 things going on. Parents then ask about ADHD......Over the holiday, I'm planning on going camping, somewhere with my family. I appreciate this time with, almost, mandatory disconnection from the digital world.