How do we deal with our "millennial" learners?

September 13, 2017 9:00am CST
A few days ago, my 10- year- old daughter asked me when I was born. When I told her the year, she screamed and said, "Oh my gosh, Mommy. You are also a millennial. I read it somewhere that those who were born starting 1980s belong to the millennial generation. That's the reason why you are able to use Twitter and Instagram." I was not just surprised by her scream but also by the info she shared. Really?! Am I a millennial? Anyway, I am proud of her that she is quite an enthusiastic reader even if children of her age prefer to play more with their gadgets than read books. For sure, my daughter and son belong to the millenial generation, and I can observe some characteristics that make them one. For example, they can effortlessly manipulate electronic gadgets like smartphone or tablets. We did not teach them. Moreover, they are good at multitasking. However, they sometimes lack focus or find it difficult to keep their attention. These are just some of the observations which I have also observed in my senior high and college classrooms. It has been a challenging experience in terms of dealing with these "millenial" learners in the classroom. They take pictures of their assignments either written on board or flashed on the screen instead of copying the notes on their notebooks. Their attention span has become much shorter (less than 15 minutes actually). Aside from these, they use their smartphones even if you forbid them do so during classroom discussion. So how have I been coping with these learners? First, I make effort to know them more (their characteristics). If possible, I needed to learn their language. I joined Twitter and Instagram so I will be able to relate what they usually talk about. I also strive to create learner-centered classroom. As much as possible, I design tasks and activities that allow them to lead, plan, and make decisions. In this way, I can keep their attention.
3 people like this
1 response
@sabtraversa (8540)
• Italy
13 Sep
I guess I'm a millennial as well. I was so proud of being born before 2000, but... It's good you've been working on understanding these new generations in order to be able to teach them better.
1 person likes this
13 Sep
Hi, there, fellow millennial! I feel the need to understand them so that I won't be frustrated. I used to compare myself (when I was a student) with them
1 person likes this