Thursday, April 23, 2009

Thoughts on Kids in the Digital Age

They can pick up a digital camera and use it immediately without reading instructions.

They found features on your digital camera that you never knew about after three years of nearly daily use.

They figured out how to make audio clips attached to digital photos with the digital camera.

They found ways to edit and manipulate digital images to improve their appearance. Who knew you could change a photo to sepia tones right on the camera itself?

They can make digital video without effort and begin scripting comedy skits with their friends.

They ask when they can open a You Tube account and begin sharing movies in cyberspace.

They ask to begin keeping a blog but never write with pencil on paper on their own. In fact they say they hate writing but will do it to share thoughts on a blog or personal website.

They ask when can they start writing their own Amazon customer reviews.

They know how to use the computer without being taught.

They figured out how to use the Amazon Kindle without instruction.

They figured out how to use the MP3 player, download music, rate the songs and create playlists.

They can figure out how to use a new video game console and learn to play the games without reading any instructions.

They have figured out what all the extra buttons on the remote control for the TV, satellite TV and DVD actually do and can make the stuff do things we parents never knew it could do.

Yet the more basic analog technology confounds them.

My eleven year old complained that the only edition of the audio book he wants to listen to is available on casssette and passed it up claiming it is too hard to use. He asked if we could travel to another public library as he thought they had it in CD format. It's a high class problem to have, I tell you, to want to use the more current or most current technology only.

Suffice it to say I'm not giving in on this one. Today we'll have a lesson in how to use the cassette player function of our portable stereo.


erin said...

I don't even have a cassette player anymore! I recently (fairly recently) lost most of my tapes in a basement flood. I cried a little, cause most of them were mixed tapes friends had made me over the years.

My kids love tech stuff too, it just comes so easily to them! My almost four year old didn't talk till she was 2 1/2 and she can use painting programs, listen to music and play games on the computer. My 6 year old uploads her own photos to her own folder. Nuts!

BFU Rector said...

I'm just as guilty as my kids. I was proficient in MSdos, then windows came along. I started letting the kids handle the tough spots, and they took over. Now when I run into a wall in firefox or Ubunto Linux I call them to help me find the doors.

Perhaps it's time to exchange more lessons.