25 March, 2011

Need to inspire

Nichole Pinkard from New Learning Institute on http://vimeo.com">Vimeo.

A friend recently asked me if I would hold a series of mini-workshops for youths and their parents concerning media literacy. I don't know what it is like where you live, but in Germany, there tends to be an enormous amount of discussion about the dangers of media and very little celebration of its potetial to influence our children's ability to develop their communication and problem-solving skills.

Nichole Pinkard speaks persuasively about how imperative it is for us to inspire our children toward learning a complex set of learning skills they will undoubtedly need in the future. Can you imagine what it would be like to have access to the Digital Youth Network program (especially library part) she discribes?

Mimi Ito from New Learning Institute on Vimeo.

Equally, Mimi Ito looks at the questions of "Why do we assume that kids socialising and playing is not a side of learning?" and "Why do we assume that schools can't have a spirit of entertainment and play as a part of what they are doing?". Her group has done extensive research about "friendship driven participation" and what short of beaviour and learning processes the children are involved in. They have also looked at all the things kids do beyond just chatting with each other after school.

She summarises succinctly the gap that exits between the generations. How the older generation places very little value on the time their children spend before the screen. How they even believe the internet is hostile to learning. What she says is must do is  to differentiate between friendship-driven activities and interest-driven activities. If we lump them all together we miss the opportunity to enter into a conversation with our children about something that has a huge potential to teach them important skills.


  1. (I have to sign out then sign in again to leave a note.)

    I was thinking that they were taught screens were only for fun.

  2. Fascinating and inspiring1 Thanks for these videos.

  3. Dear Lia, I´m not sure if I should post this or not, but I will simply do it. What you say about the discussions over here in Germany about the dangers is perfectly right. May there be a connection with what my sister and I call "the traumatized generation"? We have had a long discussion about the fact that our parents and/or grandparents have all been traumatized by their expereinces in World War 2 (I am not speaking of victims and/or guilt, just speaking of what happened to them whilst they were children). No one ever dares to speak about that, because they all feel so guilty, but now, as this generation are getting old, I listen to so much anxiety, fear, dispear ... just thought that might tie in with all these other anxieties in this country.