At the recent South Ayrshire Building Windmills Conference for all of their headteachers I referred to some perceptions of modern day youth culture. In particular I referenced data that was collected by QTX on behalf of channel 4 earlier this year.
It’s representative of a significant sample of 12 – 24 year olds across the UK (although I forget how big the sample size was).
Key points from the study were as follows:
- They personally own 8 devices (including MP3 player, PC, TV, DVD player, mobile phone, stereo, games console, and digital camera)
- They frequently conduct over 5 activities whilst watching TV
- 25% of them agree that “I’d rather stay at home than go on a holiday with no internet or phone access”
- A quarter of young people interviewed text or IM (instant message) friends they are physically with at the time
- They have on average 123 friends on their social network spaces
- And the first thing the majority of them do when they get home is turn on their PC
I think this data is interesting for schools and the emerging nature of education.
If you believe the data is reprehensive, perhaps school leaders should be asking themselves the following questions?
- Do you know how your students interact with technology?
- Do you know the amount of children in your school who have access to the Internet at home? How will you collect this data?
- Do you know how the young people in your school can access the Internet?
- Should students be allowed to multi task in lessons?
- Is the definition of an on-line ‘friend’ the same as a traditional ‘friend’? Is this changing definition important for schools and responsible internet use?