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Instilling Lifelong Learning As A Generation X Teacher

1844 words - 7 pages

Born between 1965 and 1980, Gen Xers grew up in an era of emerging technology (Valued Options , n.d). Their relationship with digital technology will positively influence the development of their teaching practice. The generation gap between those born post 2000 and Gen X can be minimised to students by recalling that Google and YouTube were created by Gen X (Grimes, 2011, p. 1-3). These tools enable lifelong learning by providing the ability to view, and research topics anywhere (Howell, 2012, p. 13). Gen Xers, have been in the workforce for some time. They know what a digitally ready Australian workforce needs (Howell, 2012, p. 12). Children of Gen Xers are either in primary school now or about to begin. These children use tablets, smartphones, and digital television and they are learning to read and write using digital technologies and these are motivating them to learn. Gen Xers could be described as digital natives. Generation X saw the emergence of the Commodore 64, and Nintendo Entertainment Systems (Ultimate Console Database , 2007) in the 70’s and 80’s. Mimeographs were replaced by high-speed copiers, faxes transmitted seconds, and handheld calculators appeared. Computers which, occupied rooms became desktop appliances (Valued Options , n.d). Gen Xers have adapted to change. This ability to adapt will be a positive influence within the classroom.

Instilling Lifelong Learning as a Generation X Teacher.

Lifelong learning tasks for students should allow them to develop lifelong learning skills and employability (Queensland Studies Authority, 2013, p. 1). For children in primary school the workforce is a long way off, but the core skills of familiarity with digital devices will expand thought and challenge competencies. Students need to be able to demonstrate the capacity to work and learn independently, communicate effectively, plan and organize, problem-solve, self-manage and interact effectively with others (Queensland Studies Authority, 2013, p. 1). From foundation to year 12, students are required to produce work using digital technologies such as tablets or laptops. For a teacher the ability to demonstrate how to use, and give an adequate experience to students in the use of these technologies so they have the foundation to expand on this knowledge throughout school and afterwards is essential (Howell, 2012, p. 13). Sociologist Norman Ryder published a thesis, which explores what drives generations. His thesis postulates that, generalisations about any generation will not describe individual members of that generation. Gen Xers have however experienced events that make their perspective particular to their generation. Notably they focus on education and career (Foley & LeFerve, 2000, p. 1-7). This trait will be beneficial for students of Generation X teachers. An innate focus on education and career will mean students receive the message that the goal of working towards a career will enhance lifelong learning and foster the skills...

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