Leaps and Bounds.
My 6-year-old came home from school yesterday with an email address.
Now, naturally, because he is in first grade, I got no explanation as to why they have one or what they will be using it for at this age (though throughout their school career, I can imagine that they would eventually be using it to email assignments to their teachers). I'm thinking that for right now they may be using it to learn how to type, sending messages back and forth. I am in awe that our school district is diving right into technology with such young kids. I am both really pleased with this and also appalled at how old I am.
First of all, how cool is it that schools can now keep up with technology to where our kids will learn to type via emails instead of plucking out letters on some typing program. They'll do this using a mobile laptop cart of Chromebooks that travel from room to room. Additionally, last year in kindergarten, Gus was using an iPad to do reading activities. He used an iPad before I did. I don't think about the fact that my kids need to learn to use the same technology as I have - it seems like it's only fair that they always stay a little bit behind the grownups - but the opposite is true because those spongy little minds soak up every bit of it, almost as if apps and email and swiping and touch screens are already hard-wired into their DNA. What still feels like a new technology to me is just what is to them- it always has been.
My husband pointed out tonight that when we were in school, the biggest technological issue was figuring out that the television and the VCR needed to be turned to channel 3. Now teachers have to make sure that the computer is properly wired to the Smart Board. All this advancement makes me wonder how easily I would be able to transition back into a classroom if the time comes. I stopped teaching six years ago and we had none of the things I have mentioned in this post. And that's only six years. It is amazing how rapidly technology has/is changing.
For now I will do my best to keep up and will wait for the day when he surpasses me in technological knowledge, which, as this rate, will probably be relatively soon. Then he can get frustrated with me the way I do with my own mother, who for years could not program the clock on her VCR. In the meantime, I think I will write him an email.