Teaching children to evaluate resources and determine credibility is the biggest challenge of our 21st Century world. Until now authoritative textbooks have dominated the world of education, but not anymore.
In the video below, Howard Rheingold, the digital thinker, professor (Stanford and UC Berkeley), and personal learning network advocate, describes how parents and educators should help students develop the ability to ask questions when they discover digital information, thereby evaluating the quality or lack of it. Rheingold calls this “crap detection,” a term originally coined by Ernest Hemmingway.
We need to teach kids, Rheingold points out, “how to search and how to find” and how to be sure that what is found is of good quality. The long-range goal is for each individual to develop what Rheingold calls a “personal trust network.”
In this video presentation he notes that teaching children to ask some simple questions about each source helps them develop the skill to look below the surface. And a side benefit is that children who master what he calls the “literacy of critical consumption” will be safer and more secure in the digital world.