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Old pen and the new page

Imagine a woman washing in a river when there are taps everywhere in the community and because people hardly see this happen when they do, they think it’s the archaic way of doing things.
That’s exactly how 21st century students see their 19th century teachers, even though they have all the experience needed to teach them. I can’t imagine how the teachers from this century feel when their students argue with them about things they see on the internet and compare it to their teaching.

Indeed, internet is good and helps students in their research and better understanding. But also the internet is available to everyone; and anyone at all can put up anything on the internet whether experienced or not in that field. This why information on the internet can either be trusted or not and that’s why there are books available to refer to as well. But students are naïve and want to believe what the internet says all the time. If they don’t know, “Books never lie” and this still stands because books were first written by authorities in particular fields after years of research. Books also go through proofreading phases and the errors are detected and corrected before publishing, unlike information on the internet which barely goes through any check. Looking at laws and experiments of Isaac Newton and the likes, their experiments still hold concrete grounds and even serve the basis for most of scientific experiments today even though they were not fortunate enough to have modern up-to-date laboratories and equipment.

There lies a problem between teachers trying to teach the authentic and students choosing to fall on the internet to challenge what is being taught. To curb this problem as teachers, the following can be done:
• Teachers should surf the net and provide students with the appropriate websites suitable and accurate for the class.
• Teachers can also publish their notes online as PDFs or even do short YouTube videos that would attract students not only from their class but worldwide. These links can be given to students to use as supplementary learning aids. This will also dilute the chuff online.
• Also if the students get too attached to the internet and do not pay attention in class, teachers can set questions from textbooks which would be difficult to find answers to on the internet. This method would make the students lover of textbooks rather than the internet. After all, no student wants to fail.

As teachers you should not be afraid to take risks which in the future can help schools innovate. Sociology teaches us that culture is dynamic and so is everything in life. Technology is the trend and teachers should be prepared and equipped to guide the 21st century student through its use by example.

July 5, 2019

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