Are we living in the 21st century? Yesterday it was apparent to me that we wern’t. Saturday I took my Administrative ORELA exam. You would think that the test would be online and the results would be instant. That is something that we want our students to do to give them instant feedback on how they are doing, but when it comes to having adults get those instant results, testing facilities who determine Oregon’s highly qualified status of teachers and administrators are against this type of testing. This really made me think about what is an “optimal learning environment”. For me it is more than just the learning aspect but the assessment aspect as well. Students use new media on a regular basis and are almost given instant feedback without having to ask for it. In regards Sugata Mitra’s talk on TED, kids want to absorb information at an alarming rate. They will do almost anything too get that knowledge through technologic devices and social media. I do believe that we need to be teaching kids to create media rather than just being consumers of it. They have already gotten that skill down and it puts most of us adults to shame. At a recent conference I was at I ran into a science teacher whose entire school website is made up of every child’s blog. Every bit of their work was created online for everyone to see, share, and collaborate. They were creating and consuming on a daily basis. This is where I would like to see more school headed with getting kids to use those 21st century skills that will be required of them.