A pixelated world: Research on kids

Last month my mom bought a wii and my dad started talking about getting an iphone.  These are two people who had embraced email only after the Internet bubble had already burst.  Perhaps moreso than the growing number of reports about digital natives, their shift reinforced to me that the digital future is now.

In Education, the technology is often emphasized over the use of technology.   However in designing and changing what teaching and learning looks like (in and out of classrooms), what is essential to understand is the human piece. 

A recent report by Pew Research, Teens, Video Games and Civics begins to touch on the reasons why integrating interactive and social technologies has the potential to be a game-changer: it matches the way many kids (and adults) now experience, communicate, create, and make meaning in their lives. 

According to the Pew report, 97% of American teens ages 12-17 play some kind of video game.  Moreover, game playing is social; 76% of teens play games with others.  Given the ubiquity and social aspect of that medium, how can we contrast with (and adapt) current ways that teaching and learning happens?  What do we need to know to pose a similar question of other technologies?


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