Monday, March 26, 2007

Information Revolution

We are studying the Transportation and Industrial Revolutions in my Social Studies class right now. Today I tried to tie them into the kids lives, by discussing the Information Revolution that is going on now, and that their children and grandchildren will be studying as history when they are in school.

I brought up Wozniak, Jobs and Gates and compared them to Morse, Bell and Edison. I discussed the evolution from boomboxes (can you believe we actually used to carry those things around on our shoulders?) to the first Walkmen, to today's MP3 players that hold thousands of songs (and some of them video).

I discussed the evolution of telephones from rotary copper wire technology, to cellphones.

Very few of the kids were able to grasp the magnitude of the Informational Revolution, but I was myself struck by it.

I teach in a lower class neighborhood, (most of my kids are Title 1 and get free lunch and breakfast)and I teach 8th graders....13 year olds. Yet in each of my five classes, I had a dozen kids who each had a cellphone, and many of them had camera phones. These "poor" kids had the ability to not only instantanously call almost anywhere in the world, anywhere they happened to be, but most of them could take and send pictures.

Think about that. These kids who are considered poverty stricken had a communications ability that twenty years ago, even the President would have envied. But to these kids, it's just life as normal. They have no appreciation for the wonder of it.

Still, it does make you think doesn't it. What's next?


Ed said...

This has been an explanation for why on an emotional level we are maturing slower (30 is the new 20.) Are access to information both size and speed gives each of us so much to digest that it takes longer.

Like you said. Just think about the information we have access to. I would say soon at any time we will be able to look up just about anything. The two of us can be eating at In-n-out and look up all of Ray Bradbury's novels...or even read any of them.

Ed said...

...and IM and Email will explain why I can't spell.

Our not Are. Ugh.