Four Fundamental Historical Firsts

The Internet brings individuals and communities four indisputably important major historical firsts:

1. Fingertip access to the world’s knowledge base; the ability to find specific information within seconds of having the need from worldwide sources. This allows self-empowerment through self-directed, just-in-time, inquiry-based learning.

2. Inexpensive global self-publishing for both individuals and communities; sharing creative works and resources with an authentic peer audience through the ability to self-publish globally using multimedia on a shoestring budget on equal par with the world’s largest universities, corporations, and governments. This allows for every story to be told and dramatically facilitates the sharing of information.

3. The ability to collaborate with individuals without restraint due to distance or time, either privately one-to-one or publicly involving whole communities, bringing people together around purposeful causes to take organized action. The Internet increases the quantity and quality of human relationships.

4. Youth often know more about computers and Internet than adults, making them valuable mentoring and technical support resources. Youth typically outpace adults in their acquisition of new skills when they have the opportunity for Internet access at school, and particularly at home. Why? One reason is they often have the time adults often don’t have!! This creates a potentially positive opportunity for adults to learn from youth and to reward youth with social recognition for sharing their skills with others.

A Step-By-Step Guide to Self-Empowerment

This guide is structured around four successive empowerment levels for using the Internet, related to the four historical firsts. This guide represents a logical, practical, cross-cultural approach supported by self-directed learning resources from a wide variety of Internet sources. We know we all learn best through direct hands-on exploration. Have Fun!

fourlevelsnew.gif (11737 bytes)