For some reason, I keep coming back to the idea of New Media improving education because I think I am probably going to end up in education (in some capacity or another) so these ideas really appeal to me . . . I saw this article on how DDR is storming P.E. classes on the Times front page this morning. Cool! I think I probably would have loved to play a danced-based video game in P.E. instead of doing all of those things like volleyball, dodge ball, bowling, basketball, t-ball, soccer, etc.
However, one of the quotes irked me a bit/ got me thinking about the future of our country . . . "What you're seeing is a move toward activities where you don't need to be so great at catching and throwing and things like that, so we can appeal to a wider range of kids." Is this a good idea? Are we going to totally breed out the culture of team sports and replace it with video-based simulacrum? I don't really know how I feel about that. It was sort of sad to read the quote from one P.E. teacher about how the kids scream in glee over DDR--but they never had that sort of excited reaction to basketball.
There's something so classically American childhood about playing baseball and basketball, and I don't know if I would advocated a total replacement of these activities with new media forms like DDR. But I do know that getting kids to move who are in threat of becoming overweight and obese is a really good thing, even if it does mean "dancing" on a DDR game during Phys Ed class.