'The Dumbest Generation'

March 27, 2009
By Ryan Hover BRONZE, Clinton, Montana
Ryan Hover BRONZE, Clinton, Montana
1 article 0 photos 0 comments

I am not smarter because of homework, Mark Bauerlein's book, 'The Dumbest Generation' states that video games make us dumber, we do not do enough homework during the week, and technology is killing our learning skills. I think that his thesis within the book is false because video games do not make us dumber or less social, we already do enough homework, and we need technology in classrooms to enhance learning.
First, the book states that video games make us dumber and less social. 'This is not true,' says Dr. Scott Rigby. 'The brain has three basic psychological needs: autonomy (freedom of choice), mastery (feeling like your competetant), and social interaction (being social with other people). Playing video games gives you all those needs plus some.' Also, from selfpursuit.com, a study from the University of Rochester, New York, video games give a person 85% faster decision making skills than normal people. So, clearly video games do not make us dumber or harm us in education.
Second, in his book, the author says that we do not do enough homework during the week. Alfie Kohns says that research shows that doing homework during school does not help improve test scores. Kohns also says that teachers should give students less homework, but more long term assignments to boost responsibility. A recent study from TIMISS Case Study Project author Arnold W Stevenson notes that the Japanese, when asked if they have homework, the most common reply is no. This is because Japanese teachers do not assign homework, they expect there students to study on there own to know the information for the tests. Japan has always been ahead of the US in education, so the things they do with school work and homework must succeed. So, I think we do enough homework, our classrooms just need to concentrate on the right homework.
Thirdly, the author says that we are not learning as well with the new technology in classrooms. I think we need the technology in classrooms to be able to learn with our current state in the world. In the classroom, we need the technology like the internet and TVs to be able to have access to new and up-to-date information to enrich the learning experience. Also the Department of Education says that you can learn from a book just fine, but to get the real understanding we must use technology. Using technology we can see how blood actually moves through the veins, or how a cell produces RNA strands, or what an ecosystem can look like in fifty years. This is the kind of in-depth information that will boost our knowledge in school and life. So, we need technology in classrooms to be able to enhance the learning experience.
So, all in all, I do not think we are the dumbest generation. The author brings up some valid undeniable points about our generation like lower test scores, more TV usage, and more internet time, but all generations have their downsides. Also, if we spent the time I am sure we could come up with a book that slams his generation just as much as he seems to want to slam ours.
"The homework debate." Techniques 82.1 (Jan 2007): 7(3). General OneFile. Gale. Hellgate High School. 16 Mar. 2009

"Technology's impact On Learning." 25 Mar 2009 .
Department of Education 1995 hsba.org

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