If you go to http://thefischbowl.blogspot.com/2007/06/did-you-know-20.html, you will see a presentation. The information in this presentation contains facts that most people probably are not aware of. For example, the numbers of college graduates in the year 2006 in these three countries are as follows:
The U.S.-1.3 million
To me, this was rather surprising. I thought that the U.S. produced the largest number of college graduates, and definitely was unaware that it only produces a third of the number that China produces. Also, 100% of the college graduates in India speak English, and it is predicted that in 10 years, the number one English-speaking country will be... China. There are new college majors now that didn't even exist 10 years ago, such as new media, organic agriculture, e-business, nanotechnology, and homeland security. This shows the advancement of today's job necessities.
As for progressions in technology, it is simply amazing. More than 70% of 4-year-olds have used a computer. More than 50% of 21-year-olds have created web content. The number of internet devices alone increased from one thousand in 1984 to six hundred million in 2006! E-bay revenue for 2006 was six billion dollars, and there have been more than 2.7 billion searches performed on Google only this month! It makes you wonder who answered these questions before Google was around. More than 230,000 new users sign up for MySpace every day, and if MySpace were a country, it would be the eighth largest country in the world!
One thing we need to consider: are we as teachers doing our job to prepare this generation to put these technologies to use? One quote from the presentation especially caught my attention. "We are currently preparing students for jobs and technologies that don't exist in order to solve problems that we don't even know are problems yet." And Albert Einstein said "We can't solve problems by using the same kind of thinking we used to create them." Are teachers overdoing it in the wrong areas, and not yet doing enough in others? When is too much too much? And, what changes need to be made? These are questions I think are very important to consider and analyze as we continue in learning to be educators.