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Re: Web 3D: Students Using OpenSim Reflect On the Pressing Issues That We All Ask About Using Virtual Worlds

Just as I feel a sense of pride and accomplishment in keeping up with the trends of technology in education...wikis, blogs, podcasts, virtual worlds and more, I encounter the vocabulary of the newest generation of learners. This generation speaks effortlessly about twitter, web 3D, OpenSim, digital citizenship, lulu and flat classroom conferences.As educators trying to stay ahead, or at least stay with our students, should our PD focus take a dramatic and expedient shift? Should we be worried about the pace of evolving technology, or simply pragmatic?

Personally, I enjoy the newest additions to our learning world, especially when in the role of learner (though fully admit they can be overwhelming in number). It is fascinating to observe how the integration of video information into the traditional textual format adds meaning, and increases retention of information, by making the information-sharing a personal experience.

Teachers fall from one extreme of the continuum to the other in terms of which new technologies they currently understand or use. Many have not had exposure to some of the emerging social networking capabilities at all. This leads to the following: along with the prevalent question, 'what is the future of education?, perhaps it's time to ask 'what is the future of educators?

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