Early evening yesterday I gave a key-note at the second plenary session of the Online Educa conference in Berlin (over 2000 participants, from 90 countries, 92 parallel and 4 plenary sessions in 2 days). Together with Clive Shepherd and Donald Clark, it was up to us three to entertain those that still had the courage to attend this last and late session (17:45-19:00) after what was a long and intensive day.
It seemed the session went over well.
The slides I used are online at SlideShare of course as well as embedded below:
My presentation consisted basically consisted of these messages:
1) It is not very useful to talk about Gen Y as a ‘different species’, because the world is changing, not these kids. The kids are adapting and so should we all. Treating the kids as having changed basically means you’re not prepared to change yourself to adapt to the new environment we find ourselves in. Therefore Gen Y is everybody that is adapting. I held up my niece, my mother in law and myself up as specimens of Gen Y.
2) My learning, life, and work has shifted enormously in the past years, due to internet and mobile communication. It has had much wider effects than just the possibilities the technologies bring in themselves
3) That wider effect is because we have created new infrastructure and that has always had major impact on all kinds of aspects in our culture and society
4) We all, not just kids, need to adapt to that new world we created ourselves, we all need to become part of Gen Y. And then added a number of quotes of the group I work with at Rotterdam University, that you can see as signs of how far you are on the path to becoming part of Gen Y. Notice that none of these quotes are about technology, but about personal change.
Afterwards I had dinner with a group of Dutch edubloggers, which was quite a lot of fun. During that dinner I discovered how many potatoes you can hide under a Wiener Schnitzel, and embarassed myself by complaining to the waiter that the potatoes I ordered weren’t there. To which the reply was: look under your schnitzel.
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