John Eyles –

“I think it was Prensky that coined the phrase ‘digital immigrant’ and ‘digital native’ and I think he did a disservice – but it was great for his own promotion. We are all digital pioneers in this space but one of the distinctions I suppose is that the kids have been born with this technology available to them, so for them it is like chewing gum and they can use it very readily. For me, I’ve been involved in the space for a long time but it wasn’t there when I was born. Having said that, I have seen a lot of research that shows that kids’ knowledge of the Internet and knowledge of new media technologies is actually a very, very thin slice of the larger pie and was one of the things that spurred Project Mobilise on was seeing and being saddened by many teachers holding up their hands and saying, “Oh the kids know more than I do. I’ve only got five years left before I retire” and being defeatist about it and feeling that their role no longer had a purpose. I certainly don’t think that’s the case at all. Yes, there is a shift that teaching roles are becoming more as facilitators and yes, the types of activities mediated by these technologies are going to be different. But the wise head – the person who can choreograph a really engaging learning experience with outcomes that are going to foster all sorts of competences that the kids require – is really, really vital, more vital probably than ever before because the future is unknown and we need to prepare kids for an unknown future as best that we can.”



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