Marc Prensky says....
Listen to the Natives
Schools are stuck in the 20th century. Students have rushed into the 21st. How can schools catch up and provide students with a relevant education?
School didn't teach me to read—I learned from my games.
Our young people generally have a much better idea of what the future is bringing than we do. They're already busy adopting new systems for communicating (instant messaging), sharing (blogs), buying and selling (eBay), exchanging (peer-to-peer technology), creating (Flash), meeting (3D worlds), collecting (downloads), coordinating (wikis), evaluating (reputation systems), searching (Google), analyzing (SETI), reporting (camera phones), programming (modding), socializing (chat rooms), and even learning (Web surfing).
We need to help all our students take advantage of these new tools and systems to educate themselves. I know this is especially hard when we're the ones floundering, but teachers can certainly ask students, “Does anyone do anything on the Web that is relevant to what we're discussing?” or “Can you think of any examples of this problem in your computer games?”
As educators, we must take our cues from our students' 21st century innovations and behaviours, abandoning, in many cases, our own predigital instincts and comfort zones. Teachers must practice putting engagement before content when teaching. They need to laugh at their own digital immigrant accents, pay attention to how their students learn, and value and honor what their students know. They must remember that they are teaching in the 21st century. This means encouraging decision making among students, involving students in designing instruction, and getting input from students about how they would teach. Teachers needn't master all the new technologies.
All this and much more interesting reading is available via the links above. I find it inspiring.