Over spring break, I was visiting my friend's family. They're big fans of Kindle Fires, and everyone in their family has one. My friend's mom, Brenda, was telling us about how her three-year-old granddaughter, Emery, likes to play on Brenda's Kindle Fire. Apparently Emery likes to play with an app that lets you build different vehicles out of various shapes. Brenda told us that usually Emery has around 4 or 5 different vehicles she can do, but one day Brenda noticed that Emery suddenly was making some new boats and airplanes in addition to her regular vehicles. Emery had actually figured out how to purchase and install the $1.99 version of the app, instead of the free version that Brenda had downloaded on it! It really got my attention because I was astonished that such a little kid could figure that out! It only goes to show how incredibly smart kids are and how good they are with technology, even at the ripe young age of three.
I was probably 4 or 5 the first time I played with a computer (granted it wasn't a very high tech one...computers in 1995 were a little sketchy), and the first time I had access to a touch screen was when I was about 15. I consider myself to be pretty technologically-minded, but think about how much more so kids of today are going to be! They've literally been born with technology in every area of their life. It's no wonder kids hate school and would rather play video games these days; school is old fashioned and games are fun and exciting.
We have got to start making school rich with educational technology if we want to keep kids interested!
I'm proud to report that I'm now an official Educational Technology minor! I'm really excited to see where it takes me and learn about all of the ways that technology can be harnessed and used in the classroom.
If you want to check out some kid-friendly apps for a tablet or smartphone, check out this online article from TheGuardian. Lots of those apps are really great places to start kids out on the fun technology you have in your home, and are educational and creative to boot!
Ed tech is becoming such a big deal nowadays, it'll be exciting to see where else it takes us in the future.
Photo by Tim Wilson, Flickr.com, http://www.flickr.com/photos/timwilson/6578700171/