We’ve had a 100% success rate in teaching all jr/sr high school kids to use PikiFriends, and they usually get it quicker than adults. But this needs to be said: Plenty of kids out there don’t know a laptop from a bookend.
Simple is good, so I’ve made 2 categories for the computer illiterate young’uns out there:
1 – “Where’s the ‘q’ key?”
While much more common among us old fogies (they conveniently call themselves “technophobes”), this type exists in the digital generation as well. They’re the ones with no interest in computers whatsoever. Why? Because deep down they know they weren’t born with the required skill set. They’re missing the point completely and can barely turn the things on.
It’s an aptitude thing. I can’t rollerblade or bat lefty. I can put on the rollerblades and hold the bat, but it’s ugly and painful (physically and mentally) and I’d rather do something I’m good at.
2 – “My computer’s broken.”
While I could admire them for their practical approach, this very large group has computer tunnel vision: they don’t get creative, they just use it to get what they need. Surf the net? Easy. Computer games? No prob. Use Facebook? Of course! Check your privacy settings on Facebook? Oh, I’m sure it’s fine. Use PowerPoint? Do I look like a geek to you? Protect your contact information. From who? Computer frozen? My computer’s broken!
But hey, maybe these 2 categories of kids are leading richer and fuller lives than I, truly living in the moment, appreciating the finer things, making meaningful, life-altering relationships with others. Or maybe they’re texting while sitting in front of a TV.
At any rate, I think it’s important for educators to know that a very large number of kids are clueless with computers, or at least are in need of some practical pointers. Somebody needs to make sure they can cope with the modern world and be aware of the dangers of being ignorant online.
I’m happy to say that PikiFriends is helping.