Regular readers have probably noticed a bit of a slow-down in the rhythm of the Radical recently. Typically known for a Sunday-Wednesday posting pattern, I’ve only gotten one post a week up in the past few weeks.
That’s because I’m in the final stages of revising my second book, Teaching the iGeneration: 5 Ways to Introduce Essential Skills with Web 2.0 Tools—and it’s going to be GOOD!
Unlike my first book—which focused on building professional learning communities—Teaching the iGeneration attempts to pull together everything that I’ve ever learned about preparing today’s children to be influential, responsible citizens in tomorrow’s world. While writing it in just under 6 months nearly killed me, I’m super proud of what it has become.
Here’s an overview from the Executive Summary to whet your whistle:
You know what the iGeneration in your classroom looks like. They’re the students willing to experiment their way through anything, confident that trial and error can crack the code better than reading manuals or following directions. They’re turning to the Internet first and the library second when assigned research projects.
Their minds are working fast, but not always as deeply or as accurately as the adults in their lives would like. Yet teachers can capture the attention of the iGeneration and help them grow by integrating technology into classrooms in a way that focuses on the skills that have been important for decades.
The purpose of Teaching the iGeneration is to help teachers find the natural overlap between the work that they already believe in and the kinds of digital tools that are defining tomorrow’s learning. Each chapter introduces an enduring skill—information fluency, persuasion, communication, collaboration, and problem solving—as well as a digital solution that can be used to enhance, rather than replace, traditional skill-based instructional practices.
These solutions include blogs, wikis, content aggregators, asynchronous discussion forums, web conferencing software, video editing applications, and social bookmarking and annotation tools. In addition, Ferriter and Garry end every chapter of Teaching the iGeneration with a collection of handouts and supporting materials tailored to each skill and tool type.
Reintroducing rigorous and systematic study to the iGeneration—a generation that has grown up connected but has failed to understand the power of connections—requires nothing more than a teacher who is willing to show students how the tools that they’ve already embraced can make learning efficient, empowering, and intellectually satisfying.
I think what’s most exciting about Teaching the iGeneration is that it is truly the product of a thousand conversations with all of you! The skill based focus is an idea that Sheryl Nussbaum-Beach planted in my head years ago, and every time I read, I hear the voices of dozens of people like Sylvia Martinez, Kevin Jarrett, Dean Shareski, Lee Kolbert, Karl Fisch, Scott McLeod and Jenny Luca.
Without the never-ending motivation and inspiration provided by the people in my PLN, I could have never churned this sucker out. That makes it as much my book as it is yours.
Look for it in June of 2010!