Sunday, 17 January 2010

Teaching the generations

Steve Corbett published a must-read portrait of the four generations learning today:
  • "Traditionalists (Born between 1920 - 1945). They are also called the Silent Generation, the War Baby Generation, or the WWII Veteran Generation.
  • Baby Boomers (Born between 1946–1964). They are also called the "Me" Generation because their Traditionalist parents wanted to give them a good life.
  • Generation X (Born between 1965–1980). This generation is the children of both Traditionalists and Baby Boomers.
  • Millennials (Born between 1981–2000). They are also called Generation Y, Generation ME, Generation WE, or Nexters."
He created a Venn diagram summarizing the generations' learning styles, saying that it's a generalization. But much rings true.

I recognize myself as a typical GenXer:
  • "the first high technology generation"
  • "independent. Will work in teams when absolutely necessary, but would prefer to work alone"
  • "Like to use technology as a means for access and sharing information."
  • "Entrepreneurial – Prefer to build portable skills. ... Prefer solving problems on their own."
  • "Informal Learners - Prefer to be engaged in their learning, instead of being passive recipients. Dislike structured environments."
The points of conflict I see with the Baby Boomers, our older colleagues:
Baby Boomers tend to be
  • "Team Oriented - Embraces a team based approach to everything"
  • "Competitive - Value peer competition"
The points of conflict I see with Millenials:
Millenials tend to be
  • "Collaborative - Team players with a capital T."
  • "Structure Driven - Prefer structure in the classroom and are accustomed to following rules."
How about you, do any of these issues ring your bells?

Thank you to Neal Davis.



Hi Anne,

That was a very interesting post and I enjoyed the trip over to Corbett's article!

I'm not 100% convinced either and see conflicts: namely in terms of who one's parents were, the society and culture one was brought up in and each person's individual personality.

Still I enjoyed the piece and your take on it.

Thanks for sharing,

Anne Hodgson said...

Every simplification... I do think the generations are entities, though individuals obviously vary across cultures...

Found this interesting tweet by Sean Banville:
RT @charlie1312: RT @englishcomp: "Meet Mr. and Mrs. Gen X: A New Parent Generation." -the next gen of parents.