Operating Systems Cloud Computing
Mobile Tools and Applications iGeneration

Last week, we briefly discussed the iGeneration, but we did not define it and you might be confused by what we mean by the term. Before we define iGeneration, let’s review other generations of which you might have heard.

The first one, which includes older Americans that were born before 1946, is known as the silent generation or the Greatest Generation. Baby Boomers were born between 1946 and 1964. The next is Generation X, born from 1965 to 1979. These were individuals who were born, raised, or came of age when the digital revolution was beginning. They grew up along with Apple and Microsoft. Generation Y, also called Millennials , were born from 1980 to 2000 and spend their growing years either preparing for or in the new Millennium. Generation Z includes America’s youngest generation and they are known as being “highly connected”. You probably have heard a lot about the terms “digital kids”, “digital natives” or the “digital generation.” These later generations have grown up with computers, digital media, and now mobile devices as a mainstay in their lives.

So, What is the iGeneration and Who Is In it?

We define the iGeneration as anyone that is “Always On” as they use smart mobile devices to connect to the world around them. Thus, the iGeneration includes people from all generations, children as young as 1 or 2 and senior citizens who are approaching 100 years old. If they use a smartphone or tablet, they are part of the iGeneration.

From time to time in this course, we will provide you with some characteristics and potential problematic issues of iGeneration students and their parents. For example, many of today’s toddlers started using their parent’s smartphone or tablet since they were as young as 1 year old. By the times these toddlers are school age they will have acquired skills not typical of previous school age kids.

If you think middle and high school students are bored in school today, can you imagine when these toddlers reach school age if their school has not adapted to meet their “Always On” needs? This is why the definition of iGeneration students will constantly evolve and why teachers absolutely will have to adapt their teaching strategies. Can you imagine the pressure that these toddler’s iGeneration parents are going to put on our public schools that have not become iSchools and teachers that have not become iTeachers?

Recall the video about the 1 year old you saw last week? Remember what her mom said, “For my 1 year old daughter, a magazine is an iPad that does not work. It will remain so for her entire life. Steve Jobs has coded part of her OS.” This iGeneration parent is going to insist, no demand, that her child attends an iSchool and that all of her teachers are iTeachers. Yes, Steven Jobs’ vision is clearly rewiring the iOS of iGenerationers of all ages.

Teaching the Students of the iGeneration

As you learned last week in your Application Assignment, most, if not all of your students are part of the iGeneration. From now on in iLearning in Action, we are going to introduce you to a number of tools and apps that will assist you in working with this new type of student and we will show you how to use these tools. You will be using some of these to develop content for your final project.

There are many great tools and apps that can help you “go mobile” and our goal is provide you with the opportunity to explore some of these apps to see which ones work for you as you develop skills and knowledge that will allow you to make the transition to being an iTeacher.