Search engines play one of the most significant roles in our technologically enabled lives by shaping how we conceptualize and interact with information, knowledge, wisdom, and arguably reality itself. They are our externalized reasoning machines, both facilitating our access to knowledge and quickly becoming our knowledge. They are where we go to research, clarify, and…
I think this where the importance of teaching our children how to look things up the “old fashioned” way becomes critical to developing a critical thought process. I was very lucky to grow up in a “look it up” household right before the dawn of giants like Google. Whenever I asked my family a question, they told me to look it up. I had to learn how to use an Encyclopedia and a dictionary. I also had to learn how to work the Dewey Decimal system and reference rooms at the local library.
By the time that search engines became a thing, they made my work easier for sure. Number one, because it was right at my fingertips, number two because I developed the critical thinking skills necessary to form my own opinion based on what was being offered up.
What do you think? Should youth learn how to access material the “old-fashioned” way? Or are those days long behind us?