Ask anyone over the age of 40 if they are familiar with the term "digital native" and I can assure you will get a raised eyebrow. Or, ask any youngster if they’re a digital native and you’ll probably get a good sassin’.
Huh? What? Digital who?
So when I received the following email message, I realized there are still elders out there who could benefit from understanding what the term truly means. My sisters for example, even though I’ve explained to each of them, they still DON’T GET IT.
Maybe this will help. (Chart comes via Ianiv & Arieanna’s)
"Today’s tech-savvy youngsters are an enigma for most parents and educators. At OpenEducation.net, we recently took a look at the challenges facing a generation of "digital immigrants," the group that has been entrusted with raising and educating the generation of "digital natives."
Here’s a blurb from the blog post, Of Digital Immigrants, Power Browsing and Bouncing Out that truly drives this point home.
Once duly informed, the writer appears to have little trouble discerning the critical difference between herself, someone who has adapted to technology, and her son, someone who has grown up with technology. O’Brien indicates that she is in fact computer proficient, but that she still prints out documents to read them, calls people to check if they have received her e-mail, and the clincher, that she still has a dictionary by her desk. She also recalls her study habits, something akin to monk-like behavior, away from any form of distraction.
In turn, she notes her digital native son, multi-tasking, thriving on instant gratification and claiming to function best when he has the opportunity to be networked. Her son, like other digitally native children has a wonderfully flexible mind, absorbs information quickly, and adapts easily to changes.