There was an excellent gathering of parents in West Seattle last night to discuss “parenting digital natives.” Our small-group conversations focused on essential questions that reflect our cultural and family values around technology use.
The goal of the night was to stop focusing on how different the media suggests today’s world is and start recognizing the ways in which clear parenting is still important, regardless of the technological medium.
Notes and resources for growing up digital are captured in Storify and shared after the jump…
Parenting digital natives
A collection of resources for parents interested in understanding the digital world that children are experiencing. Generated by/for the Westside School parent community on April 10, 2012 in Seattle, Washington.
Storified by Jac de Haan · Wed, Apr 11 2012 16:54:36
What is this gathering all about?
Conversation Starters & Notes
· Range of opinions represented – from occasional cell phone use to 12 hours in front of a computer every day.
· Families with students from ages 4 – 14 present.
· Working from home – what message does this send?
· Many maintain healthy boundaries for children but don’t follow the rules when kids are asleep.
· Is it appropriate to use technology for reinforcement or punishment?
· Do young children differentiate between the intention of device engagement? Creative output v. consumption.
· Multi-tasking with devices – growing trend in surfing the web while watching television.
· Distinctions around how children can engage tech – learning games v. YouTube.
What do you see as some of the benefits and drawbacks of technology for your student?
· organizational facilitation/syncing second nature, learning at age when it’s easy intuitive nature
· exposure of world (under guidance) greater wealth of resources at disposal
· flexibility of device, no books
· enhancement that it adds to their life experience; wider exposure “not afraid of asking”
· opportunities to create
· finding answers to any question is possible
· learning is much more enjoyable, more effective (languages), easier to learn/more rewarding
· support for multiple learning styles
· lack of privacy, easy exposure/risk to predators/pornography
· false sense of security
· disconnecting from human element/anonymous nature of communication
· one dimensional aspect to communication
· computer cannot teach critical thinking/high level
· layering of multiple devices
· pull of attention away from present and task at hand
Where is the school heading?
Goal is a graduated 8th grader with history of successes and experience.
“Walled garden” approach
creators and critical thinkers, discriminating users of knowledge
Technology is a hook, easy to get excited
Middle school students grow into leadership role with younger grades
o digital books with reading buddies as characters
o 60 MS students deputized, leading, teaching, mentoring
Core classes – literacy, science, math, etc
Student roles – consumption vs. creation vs. interaction
21st century skills: create, collaborate, communicate, critically think