Digital Kids in Schools: Cartoons

Children teaching parents and teachers about the latest high-tech device has become a cliche. The truth at the core of the cliche, however, doesn’t disappear with repetition. Occasionally, cartoons refresh that tired cliche by throwing a spotlight on the differences between digital natives–a.k.a. children–and digital immigrants–a.k.a. parents and teachers. Here are a few cartoons that enlivened the cliche for me and illustrate the distance between the gadget knowledge children have and the knowledge, skills, and dispositions that await those children in school.



The seeming unbridgeable gap between digital natives and immigrants is, of course, bridgeable just as children grow up and come to understand what motivated their parents to do what they  did in raising them. But how best to build those bridges in and out of school remains contested. From getting rid of bricks-and-mortar schools to blended learning to integrating technology into daily lessons are just a few of the “solutions” to the “problem” of tax-supported public schools–a traditional social institution, not a business–responding to technological change. These cartoons spotlight the uneven progress to do exactly that.

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17 Comments

Filed under how teachers teach, technology use

17 responses to “Digital Kids in Schools: Cartoons

  1. Pingback: Digital Kids in Schools: Cartoons | E-Learning-Inclusivo | Scoop.it

  2. Those are terrific! LOL!

  3. this is a great blog uncle larry..i love it. i am going to tell stacye about it..good luck..
    sharon

  4. Hello,

    Great post. This is my Grade 11 class. We love the first post about the baby. We have a few thoughts about your post. We were thinking about how to help bridge the gap between natives and immigrants.
    We think it’s important to find scenarios that are relative to both parties, so they can both learn.
    We can also make sure that we take time to exchange and share in learning with the students and teachers. Have students spend some time teaching different tricks and ideas to the teacher.
    Thank you for you post.

    • larrycuban

      Thank you, 11th grade class.

      • Howdy,
        Thanks for responding to my students. Personally my favourite cartoon was the one of the teacher being texted by a student because in that same class that responded to you, I have a student that does tweet me questions instead of asking out loud.

  5. Pingback: Cartoons op zaterdag: digitale kinderen op school « Is het nu generatie X, Y of Einstein?

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  7. Steve Davis

    Policy makers, educators, and teachers would do well to acknowledge that not all children, and teens of today’s age are digital natives: a digital divide does exist. I believe there to be roughly three categories: children, and teens with such limited tech experience that they are (functionally) technologically illiterate and sometimes even techno-phobic, those with tech experience limited to games, and social networking, and those with tech experiences, and skills that surpass those of many or most adults. Some children, and teens can trouble shoot your OS and build you a custom gaming computer, while others don’t realize that they should use the tab key to indent. And many “digital natives” inability to find, and critically evaluate the information available in today’s electronic marketplace of ideas is a whole other topic.

    • larrycuban

      Steve,
      I find your tripartite division among so-called “digital natives” very helpful. You capture the experiences I have had with high school students and classes I have observed over the years. your comment also helps to put into perspective that the dichotomy of “native” (children and youth) and “immigrant” (adults) is essentially a metaphor that makes a large-grained distinction that overlooks the fine-grained variations that exist in each of these groups. Thanks.

  8. You are so on it Larry. Lively, fun, pretty accurate in the schools that allow cell phones.

  9. Pingback: Digital Kids in Schools: Cartoons | Larry Cuban on School Reform and Classroom Practice « Gonzalez Education Weblog

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