"We're not reading and writing across and down the page anymore. We're reading and writing in three dimensions: across, down, and out, the 'out' being hyperlinks. It's a whole different kind of literacy; it's a whole different kind of writing; it's a whole different kind of reading. It's a type of literacy that can't be done anywhere else but on the web."
AND SO, JAMES YAP GOES ON TO SAY,
Web 2.0 applications like online communities, blogs, and wikis should not be thought of as just a passing fad or idle socializing, but as an activity that has embedded itself into the way work gets done.
"Almost every business I can think of is using some sort of social networking tool, whether it be a chat tool within their business or using wikis to develop their manuals and their support, to do something comparable to an internal Facebook," says Yap, the director of instructional technology and data management for the Ramapo Central School District in Hillburn, NY.
For schools to keep pace with the trends being established in the world at large, Yap believes it's imperative they recognize the central role that social networking tools have grown to occupy in how employers do business, and make room for them in students' education.
"[Even] the government right now is creating an internal Facebook," he says. "It's pervasive, it's across the board."
An internal Facebook for the K-12 set is just what Yap found at the 2008 National School Board Association's (www.nsba.org) Technology and Learning Conference, …