The youngest generation — today’s school-aged children — has never existed in a world without easily accessible internet access at their fingertips. In fact, the iPhone has been around longer than most 6th graders. Using devices as a primary means to stay in touch with friends, explore interests, for music and entertainment, and to know what is happening in the world is what they’ve always known. It is perfectly normal and natural to be in a room with friends, talking or playing games, and also being online at the same time. For them, there’s no distinction between “online life” and “offline life” — it is all just “life”. This generation doesn’t recognize that some of their interactions happen in physical space and other activities happen online – they are all just interactions for them.
The disconnect comes when older generations – current teachers and school administrators – don’t see the world through the same lens. Faculty and staff tend to focus on in-class learning, and if extra materials or resources are available online it is a plus, but not necessary. However, this point of view fundamentally misunderstands the way students experience the world: for students, it is all just “learning.”
For students, the lack of an online environment that compliments their in-person learning is actually a gap in how they are used to functioning in the world.
As educators, administrators, and parents, it is our job to try to bridge that disconnect and provide robust learning resources and activities – both in the classroom and online. One way to do this is with a learning management system to easily connect what’s happening at school to what parents and students can access from home.
Thinking about implementing an LMS to help your students bring their learning with them on the go, but not sure what your school needs? Download our checklist to see the different school administration software options that exist and determine what is best for your school. Please download your checklist.