Today I subbed in a high school classroom. It doesn't matter where; it doesn't matter what subject. After four years of subbing, I've noticed one disturbing trend - students are incredibly lazy. If kids can't look online or ask a friend, then they don't know how to find an answer.
Today was an easy assignment - chapter review. Not only that, but the teacher gave the page numbers of the indices that would help them answer the most questions. The kids' first reactions were to ask the smart kid. When I put a stop to that, the whining started:
"This is too hard!"
"I don't know this!"
"We can't do this!"
Not ONE of those students had opened his or her book.
It does worry me that even with the page numbers given to them, a large number of students don't know how to look up an answer. It always surprises me how many students look at me like I've got a 3rd eye when I ask them if they've checked the glossary for definitions.
Granted I think it's wonderful that kids know how to use computers and research online, but at what expense. So a 10 year-old can create a power point. Fabulous. Can he use a dictionary? Kids are learning to be dependent on technology, but what happens when their phones lose reception?
I do a lot of reseach online because it's convenient, but before I had the internet I used the library (you know - big building, lots of books).
Techonology is a great TOOL, but I'm not so sure we should be promoting it as THE tool. I'm not convinced that it makes kids smarter, but it sure does make them lazier.