Why is research so hard?

January 2, 2018

With Google it is super easy to research. Or is it? I see this with my students all the time. It is painful, first they don't know how to use google. Just because kids are surrounded by technology that doesn't mean they actually know how to use it. I cringe every time a student puts google.com into the bar at the top of Chrome. Even when you tell them they don't have to they shrug it off. They are used to it and it is harder to learn something than it is to continue with what they have always done. This is why research isn't nearly as easy as it should be.

 

I'm on several groups on Facebook and people ask questions for the simplest things. I wonder why they don't just google it. But they are just like my students. They keep doing the same thing they have always done because it is easier than actually learning something new. Don't know something, ask someone.

 

I'm different because I grew up with a mother who made us look it up instead of just answering us. If we were curious about something she would take us to the library and we would take out half a dozen books on the subject. Even now whenever we have a question we don't ask each other what the answer is we will look it up. Thank you aunty google you have enriched out lives.

 

The reason my mother did this isn't because she didn't know the answer. She usually did because my mother is a smart cookie. Instead it did two things. It taught us to be independent and able to learn on our own. The second thing it did is actually very subtle and amazing when you look deeper. If I just got my answers from the group of people around us we will never be greater than our group. Instead by looking things up the group in general is constantly getting smarter.

 

Have you ever listened to someone else's conversation where they have been talking about something so stupid you want to bang your head against the wall? Well I hear it more often than not. Teenagers tend to have silly conversations all the time. Those people are used to getting their information from amongst themselves. That is flawed. Terribly flawed.

 

So the next time someone asks you a question get them to look it up. Show them how to do it properly. That means using the right words to get a reasonable answer.

 

 

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