The Net Generation have grown up in a digital world and are more at home with a digital representation of reality. The Net Generation have a strong affinity to express themselves digitally. They have grown up in a digital world and know nothing else having the ability to adapt and explore technologies to suite their own needs.
This intervention will encourage learners to express themselves in a variety of different formats ranging from digital photography, capturing and editing of video material, creation of animations, compilation of pod casts and other MMS media. The focus of the project will be on the generation of learning material for other learners and educators to have access to a more informative learning environment by sharing this material. It is envisaged that a variety of hardware and software will be used with an emphasis on Open Source where possible.
There is a gap in the Young Engineers of South Africa (YESA – www.yesa.org.za) continuum to provide a forum for the development of skills across a broad range of digital media. These include:
- Digital photography
- 2D/3D Graphics
- Pod casting
- Voice casting
- Digital music
- Video productions
- Web Site Design
The aim is to provide the learners with an additional set of skills to be able to express themselves in a format that they are comfortable with. The focus of the work will be mainly on the development of educational material to supplement their deeper understanding of some of the underlying educational processes, especially in the sciences.
It is possible to 'look into the minds' of the learners through the animations that they create in order to identify whether they have grasped the fundamentals of a concept or not. Learners may be able to reproduce two dimensional drawings from memory without having assembled all the components needed to comprehend the underlying concepts. This may satisfy the requirements for a traditional mode of teaching where marks are allocated to the drawing without any insight into the processes behind the drawing. The generation of animations may provide educators with an opportunity to identify whether an individual may or may not have understood the work comprehensively. A variety of software will be used to teach the concepts associated with each of the different aspects which will range across a range of software platforms, depending on the available technologies in the schools.