Wednesday, October 7, 2009

Louise Gorvett "Teacher Resources/Digital Divide" Sept. 28, 2009 LM_NET

In this posting, Louise asks whether teacher use digital or print professional resources more often. This is a good question that probably depends on the demographics of the teachers in a given building or district. Her next question is the one that should be considered first.
"And, on a related note, do you find that the "digital divide" applies to
teachers? Are your younger teachers more likely to embrace e-books and
online databases?"

Although this is certainly not accurate across the board, there is a "digital divide" based largely on age. I am sure we could all think of an older, or more experienced, teacher who does not think of using databases or teaching Web 2.0 skills. They are not necessarily opposed to new technologies but are comfortable with what they have been doing and often do a great job without them. Younger teachers have grown up using digital technologies and have been taught to use them during under-grad. I see older teachers whose attitude is more "how is that any better?" rather than "I can't learn how to use that." This is always a good question. Nothing should be used "just because." Younger teachers will answer, "this is WAY more fun (and a lot easier)!" Teacher-librarians should answer, "these are the skills students will need when they graduate. We need to teach them how to use them properly, ethically and responsibly."

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