10 Mar 2009 Digital Divide 2.0 Part 1

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The rapid changes in technology and information have presented major challenges to the U.S. education system. This presentation, given by DeShaunda Gooden Warner at Pearson Digital Learning's 2009 Pacific District Executive Forum on March 10, 2009, explores the growing role of technology and 21st century skills in the world today and the importance of ensuring that both transformative technology and new literacies are integrated into the today's classrooms in equitable and pedagogically sound ways in order to close the growing divide between U.S. students and their international peers. (Part 1 of 2)

The handout for this presentation may be found at http://www.scribd.com/full/13181854?access_key=key-267wheuwejotvk8lacql

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  • Explain these rules: no talking; everyone is to close their eyes throughout the exercise and listen closely to the directions that will be given; everyone is to follow the directions exactly. When everyone's eyes are closed, read the directions below slowly and carefully. If any one asks for clarification or opens their eyes to see what to do, remind them sternly of the rules of no talking and eyes closed. Simply re-read the last direction and continue on.
    1. Fold your paper in half and tear off the bottom right corner of the paper. (Pause to allow the group to do this.)2. Fold the paper in half again and tear off the upper right hand corner. (Pause)3. Fold the paper in half again and tear off the lower left hand corner. (Pause)4. Open your eyes, unfold you paper and hold it up for all to see.
    These directions produce many different patterns, depending on the choices one makes at each "fold in half" point. Source: The Systems Thinking Playbook, Sweeney & Meadows (2008).
  • Situated knowledge. My perspective on issues, but I am interested in engaging you, instructional leaders, to collaboratively construct an expanded understanding of the notion and ramifications of digital inequity and the role schools are called to play in helping to prepare all students to actively and ethically participate in, contribute to, and understand an ever-changing world.
  • What do you think the term “digital divide 2.0” means?
  • Gates mother was the daughter of a well to do banker and his father was a wealthy lawyer. In 7th grade he was transferred from public school to Lakeside, a private school which catered to Seattle’s wealthy families. In 1968, the school started a computer club (keep in mind, most colleges didn’t have computer clubs in 1968). Bill Gates got to real-time programming using a time-share terminal as an eighth grader (most folks used the laborious computer card system at the time – time-share terminal was invented in 1965). He managed to get free time-share programming time throughout his tenure at Lakeside in exchange for testing software created by C-Cubed and eventually working as a freelance programmer through the University of Washington’s Information Services, Inc. (ISI) programmer collective – as an independent study project. By the time Gates dropped out Harvard his sophomore year to start his own software company, he had been programming non-stop for 7 consecutive years. He had more exposure to software development at a young age than anyone else during that time (more than 10,000 hours). (Gladwell, M. Outliers, 2008).
    Unlike Gates, Jobs was not from a wealthy family. But he grew up in Mountain View, CA, which the epicenter of the Silicon Valley. His neighborhood was filled with engineers from Hewlett Packard. He scoured flea markets and garage sales for spare parts and attended talks given by HP scientists. He even wrote Bill Hewlett, one of HP’s founders, and requested parts (which he received) and he got a summer job on the HP assembly line building computers. (Gladwell, M. Outliers, 2008).
  • Access to technology, whether through community partnerships, at home, or at school, not only changed their lives…It’s changed all of our lives.
  • In 1956 in the United States, researchers noticed that the number of people holding "white collar" jobs had just exceeded the number of people holding "blue collar" jobs. These researchers realized that this was an important change, as it was clear that the Industrial Age was coming to an end (Wikipedia). In 1967, the production of material goods (such as automobiles, chemicals and industrial equipment) and delivery of material services (such as transportation, construction and retailing) accounted for nearly 54 percent of the country’s economic output.(P21, 2008).
  • Over the last several decades, the industrial economy based on material goods and services has shifted to a service economy driven by information, knowledge and innovation. (P21, 2008). By 1997, the production of information products (such as computers, books, televisions and software) and the provision of information accounted for 63% of the country’s output (P21, 2008). Today, Information and Communication Technology—computers, computerized machinery, fiber optics, communication satellites, Internet, and other ICT tools—became a significant part of the economy. Microcomputers were developed, and many business and industries were greatly changed by ICT. The Service economy shifted to an Information economy. (Wikipedia)
  • As the Industrial Age ended, the newer times adopted the title of "the Information Age". Of course, at that time relatively few jobs had much to do with computers and computer-related technology. What was occurring was a steady trend away, which continues today, from people holding Industrial Age manufacturing jobs. An increasing number of people held jobs as clerks in stores, office workers, teachers, nurses, etcetera. The Western world was shifting from a material goods economy into a service economy. (Wikipedia). This trend is still prevalent today. From 1995 -2005 there were 17 million new service sector jobs created and a loss of 3 million manufacturing jobs during the same period (P21, 2008).
  • All service jobs are not created equal.
  • Researchers at the National Center for Economy and Education argue that in order for the United States to remain globally competitive, we need to focus on producing the most important new products and services—those that can capture a premium in world markets– so we can ensure both jobs and high wages for our citizens (NCEE, 2007). In many industries, producing the most important new products and services depends on maintaining the worldwide technological lead, year in and year out, in that industry and in the new industries that new technologies generate. But that kind of leadership does not depend on technology alone. It depends on a deep vein of creativity that is constantly renewing itself, and on a myriad of people who can imagine how people can use things that have never been available before, create ingenious marketing and sales campaigns, write books, build furniture, make movies, and imagine new kinds of software that will capture people’s imagination and become indispensable to millions. (NCEE, 2007).
  • Information has changed
  • 1975
    Veterans of the Silicon Valley consider the most important date in the history of the personal computer revolution to be January 1975. That was when Popular Mechanics ran a cover story on the Altair 8800. The Altair retailed for $397 and allowed budding hackers and electronics whiz kids the opportunity to build, own, and use their own computer. (Gladwell, M., Outliers. 2008) Digital Natives were born the same year the Altair 880 hit the market - 1975. (Prensky, M.)
    What was the perfect age to be in 1975 to successfully ride the wave of the coming revolution? Old enough to be part of it, but not so old that you missed it? Out of high school, but yet married with kids on the way of firmly entrenched in the establishment? 20 or 21…In other words, the lucky first wavers were born in 1954 or 1955. (Gladwell, M., Outliers. 2008)
  • 1992 – New technology, old construct (like “digital” printing press)
    The World Wide Web (commonly abbreviated as "the Web") is a very large set of interlinked hypertext documents accessed via the Internet. With a Web browser, one can view Web pages that may contain text, images, videos, and other multimedia and navigate between them using hyperlinks. Using concepts from earlier hypertext systems, the World Wide Web was begun in 1992 by the English physicist Sir Tim Berners-Lee, now the Director of the World Wide Web Consortium, and Robert Cailliau, a Belgian computer scientist, while both were working at CERN in Geneva, Switzerland. In 1990, they proposed building a "web of nodes" storing "hypertext pages" viewed by "browsers" on a network,[1] and released that web in 1992. Connected by the existing Internet, other websites were created, around the world, adding international standards for domain names & the HTML language. (Wikipedia)
  • 2004
    The term "Web 2.0" refers to a perceived second generation of web development and design, that aims to facilitate communication, secure information sharing, interoperability, and collaboration on the World Wide Web. Web 2.0 concepts have led to the development and evolution of web-based communities, hosted services, and applications such as social-networking sites, video-sharing sites, wikis, blogs, and folksonomies.
    Nowadays, many people tend to think of the Information Age in terms of cell phones, digital music, high definition television, digital cameras, email on the Internet, the Web, computer games, and other relatively new products and services that have come into widespread use (Wikipedia). The pace of change brought on by such technology has been very rapid. But what has really changed during the Technology Revolution of the Information age is the nature of information itself.
  • This 5-star rated video, created by Michael Wesch an Asst. Professor of Cultural Anthropolgy at Kansas State University, has been viewed about 400,000 times on YouTube (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-4CV05HyAbM). The video, entitled, Information R/evolution explores the changes in the way we find, store, create, critique, and share information. This video was created as a conversation starter, and works especially well when brainstorming with people about the near future and the skills needed in order to harness, evaluate, and create information effectively.
  • Information is ubiquitous. Students today need a new approach to teaching and learning that reflects these changes. Any number of old-school assignments--memorizing the battles of the Civil War or the periodic table of the elements--now seem faintly absurd. That kind of information, which is poorly retained unless you routinely use it, is available at a keystroke. Still, few would argue that an American child shouldn't learn the causes of the Civil War or understand how the periodic table reflects the atomic structure and properties of the elements. Without mastering the fundamental building blocks of math, science or history, complex concepts are impossible. (Wallis & Steptoe, 2006).
  • Advanced economies, innovative industries and firms, and high-growth jobs require more educated workers with the ability to respond flexibly to complex problems, communicate effectively, manage information, work in teams and produce new knowledge (P21, 2008).
    This is a world in which a very high level of preparation in reading, writing, speaking, mathematics, science, literature, history, and the arts will be an indispensable foundation for everything that comes after for most members of the workforce. It is a world in which comfort with ideas and abstractions is the passport to a good job, in which creativity and innovation are the key to the good life, in which high levels of education — a very different kind of education than most of us have had — are going to be the only security there is.
  • In the Information Age or Knowledge Construction Era the pedagogical aims must be different. It is no longer enough to fill students heads with stuff – they must be taught how to find, evaluate, and use information to construct meaning/knowledge. In other words, effective learners, thinkers, collaborators, and creators are needed in the world today.
  • In the Information Age or Knowledge Construction Era the pedagogical aims must be different. It is no longer enough to fill students heads with stuff – they must be taught how to find, evaluate, and use information to construct meaning/knowledge. In other words, thinkers, collaborators, and creators are needed in the world today.
  • In the Information Age or Knowledge Construction Era the pedagogical aims must be different. It is no longer enough to fill students heads with stuff – they must be taught how to find, evaluate, and use information to construct meaning/knowledge. In other words, thinkers, collaborators, and creators are needed in the world today.
  • In the Information Age or Knowledge Construction Era the pedagogical aims must be different. It is no longer enough to fill students heads with stuff – they must be taught how to find, evaluate, and use information to construct meaning/knowledge. In other words, thinkers, collaborators, and creators are needed in the world today.
  • In the Information Age or Knowledge Construction Era the pedagogical aims must be different. It is no longer enough to fill students heads with stuff – they must be taught how to find, evaluate, and use information to construct meaning/knowledge. In other words, thinkers, collaborators, and creators are needed in the world today. Story about MDs 9 year old son using Google to find Mario Bros. cheatcodes
  • The explosion in information has presented a major challenge to the world of formal education. For centuries, schooling has been designed to make sure students learned facts about the world—which they proved they knew by correctly answering questions on tests. But such a system is no longer relevant when the most up-to-date facts are available at the touch of a button (Jolls, et al., 2008). In the Information Age or Knowledge Construction Era, our pedagogical goals must be different. It is no longer enough to fill students’ heads with stuff – they must be taught how to find, evaluate, and use information to construct meaning/knowledge. In other words, effective learners, thinkers, collaborators, and creators are needed in the world today.
  • For the past five years, the national conversation on education has focused on reading scores, math tests and closing the "achievement gap" between social classes. But has our myopia produced an entire generation of kids who will fail to make the grade in the global economy because they can't think their way through abstract problems, work in teams, distinguish good information from bad or speak a language other than English? (Wallis & Steptoe, 2006).
    Freehand draw – Need to focus on 21st Century Skills, Pedagogy, and Learning Environments
  • Based on the latest research in neurobiology, there is no longer any question that stimulation of various kinds actually changes brain structures and affects the way people think, and that these transformations go on throughout life. It can be, and is, constantly reorganized. The brain constantly reorganizes itself all our child and adult lives, a phenomenon technically known as neuroplasticity (Prensky, 2001). And, according to Gary Small's book, "iBRAIN: Surviving the Technological Alteration of the Modern Mind," the dramatic shift in how we gather information and communicate with one another via technology has touched off an era of rapid evolution that may ultimately change the human brain as we know it. (Interlandi, 2008).
  • Until very recently Western philosophers and psychologists took it for granted that the same basic processes underlie all human thought. While cultural differences might dictate what people think about, the strategies and processes of thought, which include logical reasoning and a desire to understand situations and events in linear terms of cause and effect, were assumed to be the same for everyone. However this, too, appears to be wrong. Research by social psychologists shows that people who grow up in different cultures do not just think about different things, they actually think differently. The environment and culture in which people are raised affects and even determines many of their thought processes. Children raised with the computer in the culture of the digital age ― think differently from the rest of us. They develop hypertext minds. They leap around. It’s as though their cognitive structures were parallel, not sequential. As a result of repeated experiences, particular brain areas are larger and more highly developed, and others are less so (Prensky, 2001). For example, thinking skills enhanced by repeated exposure to computer games and other digital media include multidimensional visual-spatial skills, inductive discovery (i.e. making observations, formulating hypotheses and figuring out the rules governing the behavior of a dynamic representation), attentional deployment (such as monitoring multiple locations simultaneously), and responding faster to expected and unexpected stimuli (Prensky, 2001).
  • Digital natives—those who have never known a world without e-mail and text messaging—use their superior cognitive abilities to make snap decisions and juggle multiple sources of sensory input. On the other side, digital immigrants —those who witnessed the advent of modern technology long after their brains had been hardwired—are better at reading facial expressions than they are at navigating cyberspace. Digital Natives accustomed to the twitch-speed, multitasking, random-access, graphics-first, active, connected, fun, fantasy, quick-payoff world of their video games, MTV, and Internet are bored by most of today’s education, well meaning as it may be. But worse, the many skills that new technologies have actually enhanced (e.g., parallel processing, graphics awareness, and random access)—which have profound implications for their learning—are almost totally ignored by educators. (Prensky, 2001). In the realm of technology, the educational community is playing catch-up. Industry is far ahead of education. And tech-savvy high school students often are far ahead of their teachers. This “digital disconnect” is a major cause of frustration among today’s students. Public schools that do not adapt to the technology needs of students risk becoming increasingly irrelevant. Students will seek other options. (USDOE, 2004).
    Link to Vision a K-12 students video (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_A-ZVCjfWf8&feature=related). This video project was created to inspire teachers to use technology in engaging ways to help students develop higher level thinking skills. Equally important, it serves to motivate district level leaders to provide teachers with the tools and training to do so.
  • The Trends in International Mathematics and Science Study (TIMSS) 2007 is the fourth comparison of mathematics and science achievement carried out since 1995 by the International Association for the Evaluation of Educational Achievement (IEA), an international organization of national research institutions and governmental research agencies. In 2007, 36 countries participated at grade four and 48 participated at grade eight. In 2007, the average mathematics scores of both U.S. fourth-graders (529) and eighth-graders (508) were higher than the TIMSS scale average (500 at both grades). Compared to 1995, the average mathematics scores for both U.S. fourth- and eighth-grade students were higher in 2007. At fourth grade, the U.S. average score in 2007 was 529, 11 points higher than the 1995 average of 518. At eighth grade, the U.S. average mathematics score in 2007 was 508, 16 points higher than the 1995 average of 492. (Gonzales, et al., 2008).
    Insert Grade 4 TIMSS math chart
  • In 2007, the average science scores of both U.S. fourth-graders (539) and eighth-graders (520) were higher than the TIMSS scale average (500 at both grades). The average science scores for both U.S. fourth- and eighth-grade students in 2007 were not measurably different from those in 1995. (Gonzales, et al., 2008).
    Insert grade 8 TIMSS Science chart
  • The average science scores for both U.S. fourth- and eighth-grade students in 2007 were not measurably different from those in 1995. (Gonzales, et al., 2008). Although there was an improvement in the scores of 4th and 8th grade U.S. students on the TIMSS, the Programme for International Student Assessment Science Test (PISA), designed to test students’ application of math and science to real-world scenarios, found U.S. students to be among the worst performers. More than 400 000 students from 57 countries making up close to 90% of the world economy took part in PISA 2006. The focus was on science but the assessment also included reading and mathematics and collected data on student, family and institutional factors that could help to explain differences in performance (OECD, 2007). Taken together, these results reveal that U.S. students may be performing well in their mastery of instructional material but that this performance is not carrying over to the application of material to real-world problems.
  • Among the 30 OECD participating countries, U.S. students ranked 21st with an average score of 489 - below the PISA OECD scale average of 500 (OECD, 2007). Beyond the obvious blow to national pride, this result is economically significant. Countries that do well on PISA have higher increases in GDP growth than countries that do not, according to studies by Stanford researchers. (P21, 2008)
    Change data to reflect 2006 PISA Science scores.
  • 10 Mar 2009 Digital Divide 2.0 Part 1

    1. 1. Video Source: Information R/evolution by Michael Wesch @ www.youtube.com/watch?v=-4CV05HyAbM

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