Connecting to the Millennium Generation – Trudy Sweeney EChO Keynote

‘Connecting to the Millennium Generation‘

Dr. Trudy Sweeney
Lecturer of Digital Media
Flinders University

I was a bit slow in getting this post up and going so the beginning is a bit thin. Trudy is the president of our local ed-tech association CEGSA (Computers in Education Group of South Australia) and this keynote was a revised and improved version of the talk given at my school’s Quality Teaching and Learning Day. So, here are my notes, for what they’re worth.

Defined the Millenium Generation as those born around 2000. This generation are stimulus junkies but lack resilience (generalisation). Referred to James Gleick's book FSTR which is a good starting point regarding the exponential change that technology is bringing.

Talked about 4 types of ICT tools useful for connecting to Millenium Learners.

Informative tools (instructive, showed example, ranging from Enchanted learning digital worksheets; the Learning Federation learning objects, talking books) ( questioning – site called Quick, then showed Netty ‘s World)

Situating tools ( Edusim, Club Penguin, 3-D Environments)

Constructive tools (Clayanimation, storytelling, Kidspiration, Kidi-pads, KidPix, control technologies, Digital Blue microscopes, Voice Thread)

Communication tools (wikis, blogs etc..)

ICT used in different ways - Content, Skills, Widening horizons.

What is interactivity? Doesn’t mean that everyone needs to touch the IWB but that learning is designed to involve as many students as possible in discussion.

Passionate about long term ICT projects – over a term or more. Don’t neglect the rest of the curriculum but keep coming back to it.

Conclusion . Millenium Generation expect to use ICT, children need to be taking control of technology, teacher facilitate learning experiences and HOTS.

Maintain a focus on pedagogy and technology

All of Trudy’s details at her delicious account -

Update: Here's the audio recording (made with permission).

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4 thoughts on “Connecting to the Millennium Generation – Trudy Sweeney EChO Keynote

  1. Bill Kerr

    I read some of the James Gleick book reviews (faster: the acceleration of just about everything) at amazon (but haven’t read his book). Some of the reviews give the impression that Gleick thinks that we have lost something through everything going faster. eg. a breathlessly superficial collection of titbits ) But I didn’t pick up this message from your report on Trudy’s presentation – so I’m left wondering whether it was not there or not reported on.

    Is it enough to just adapt to a caricature (“stimulus junkies but lack resilience”) of the “Millenium Generation” through the tools listed? What are the deeper goals of the educational process?

    As one review said:
    “Nowhere is there any discussion of how we might, as a society, turn away from this trend, or even if we should. (Gleick implicitly characterizes this trend as a negative one throughout). A breathlessly superficial survey which offers no analysis or insight”

  2. Graham Wegner

    I’ve got the audio ready to put up if you’re interested – then you wouldn’t be relying on my spotty reporting. Her keynote was to junior primary and preschool educators to set the correct context. As usual, you raise ideas and questions that many of us (including those of us who choose to present) have not really delved into in any deep thought. Trudy, of course, may have done so – I am not being presumptuous that just because something wasn’t expanded upon in a presentation that it hasn’t been considered in depth by the presenter.
    Thanks for dropping by. You may find my presentation to be even less insightful when I post it but it is just an introduction to a couple of tools that might get non-web-savvy educators looking and connecting online.

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