Changing Learners, Changing Methodologies

Danielle McCartan posts from New Jersey and notes that American schools are falling behind worldwide because “teachers are becoming archaic”, with students’ use of smartphones, apps and websites reflecting their learning choices. She explains how she is going to use Edmodo with her language students, encouraging students to create their own networks and videos, sharing resources.

Though I am not too far removed from high school, students today are very different than they were even six years ago, when I was a senior.  High school students are glued to their cell phones, they video chat with each other when they go home from school, they watch television while using their laptops and their smart phones, and they can chop up, edit, and produce a video in under an hour. I fit in this category: “today’s average college grads have spent less than 5,000 hours of their lives reading, but over 10,000 hours playing video games (not to mention 20,000 hours watching TV” (Prensky 1).  When questions in casual conversation arise, they can easily be answered in about 3 seconds – the time it takes to perform a search on Wikipedia on a smart phone.

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One thought on “Changing Learners, Changing Methodologies

  1. I love the quote from the blogpost that Mike Flacy wrote for the ‘21st Century Fluency Project’ that “students with smart phones study more than students without”. If you follow the link (, you also find this “Students are most likely to use the smartphone for studying while commuting or when at school or work. Approximately half the students use the application to study when going to bed or just waking up as well as when standing in line. Nineteen percent use a smartphone for studying while in the bathroom and 17 percent study while exercising”
    -I can imagine practicing language pronunciation while getting ready in the bathroom or repeat the glossary for next lesson before sleep…

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