Something to Think About

I was listening to a radio talk show this morning, and they were discussing a school that has opted to give every student an IPad.  Rather than use books as most standard schools do, they are pressing forward into the electronic world.  The discussion centered around whether this was a good or bad idea.  The cost was an issue that was brought up, but since the decision had already been made, that topic didn’t last long.  A teacher called in, and that’s when it got interesting.

This teacher brought up a couple of points that hadn’t been brought up before.  He was concerned that reading and spelling would go out the window with the introduction of these electronic gadgets.  Kids can text like nobody’s business, but they certainly can’t spell – at least not the way we were taught.  Everything is typed in a sort of shorthand, if you will.  Abbreviated words are the norm for these kids, and now the opportunity to learn to spell words correctly is disappearing.  Grammar is another topic that was brought up.   These kids do not learn sentence structure, and couldn’t tell you the difference between a noun and a verb if they had to.  Most don’t even know what those are.

Another caller chimed in and brought up another topic of discussion.  She mentioned that her ten year old grandchild could not read cursive, much less write it.  What?  I was stunned to think a kid couldn’t read or write in cursive at the age of ten.  After a moments’ pause, I realized that everything these kids do is with a handheld gadget or a computer – not exactly the place you will see cursive writing.  What a shame.  The art of handwriting is quickly becoming lost as well.

I thought back about my own children, who are now grown.  When I realized my son could not tell me what time it was unless he was looking at a digital clock, we had a lesson about clocks that are apparently considered “old fashioned”.  You know the kind.  They have the 12 number all around the outer edge and three hands – one that indicates the hour, another, the minutes, and yet a third, for seconds.  Didn’t take him long to catch on, but I quickly realized just how few “regular” clocks you really see.  Everything seems to have a digital readout.

Better look around, folks.  The things we pay little attention to, yet are really vitally important, may well be gone before you know it.  Hmmm……..something to think about, for sure.

Published in: on August 19, 2010 at 9:44 PM  Leave a Comment  

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