Monday, 3 December 2012

Technology growth awakens innate intelligence

Technology grows at an exponential rate. Today, you find technology in every aspect of human life. One of the best applications of technology, as I’ve seen it, is the use of computers in unleashing human intelligence. There are some kids who are unable to communicate like others because of learning disabilities. But this doesn’t have to mean that their intelligence and intellect goes unnoticed. Computers can give such kids the ability to communicate and display their genius.

I saw an inarticulate child featured on 60 minutes. This child couldn’t communicate normally, but you put a palmtop in his hand and he starts voicing hunger, sadness, emotions, demands and desires. I think that’s pretty important because what it shows is that a child with a learning disability may not be able to communicate too well, but he has the ability to be an absolute genius and he has the desire to communicate.

The earliest instance of computers being used to tap into a child’s potential that I can remember is at the Kaiser Elementary School. My kids used to go to that school and at that time, almost ten years ago, Mrs. Chris Jurenka was the principal. What Mrs. Jurenka did was to get computers installed in her school for a total investment of $150,000. It may have seemed like a large amount to spend but the idea behind it was that every child with a learning disability should have a computer in front of him. What happened next was simply amazing. These kids, who were otherwise really quiet, began to interface with the computers; and this helped them to be able to communicate with other people. Their intelligence was transparently visible through the use of computers. Then, the computers began to be used for a second purpose – to teach English to all the kids who came from a variety of cultures and spoke different languages. That was a hit too!

What this goes to show, I guess, is that innate intelligence only needs a medium to expose itself. Today, technology is giving everyone, including kids with learning disabilities, that very medium. If you feel that you can’t afford a computer, you can visit a public library. Most libraries across Europe, Canada and U.S.A are free and have computers for public use. So, make use of the technology that is awakening innate intelligence.

Post written by Mark Victor Hansen, Co-Creator behind a single dream that became the largest publishing empire in history, Chicken Soup for the Soul author of The Richest Kids in America

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