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WHAT WORKS IN EDUCATION The George Lucas Educational Foundation

Introduction & Media Literacy

Introduction & Media Literacy

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I am new to the blog, so I don't know if anyone has introduced the topic of "media literacy" as part of the multi-literacies all students (and teachers) should know. I operate the Media Literacy Clearinghouse website (http://www.frankwbaker.com) and I started it as a way of encouraging teachers to try teaching media literacy. It is also a venue for me to post resources, especially books--since most school libraries have no books for students or teachers about media or media literacy. I'd love to hear from those who HAVE used the site, especially what you've used. And if you have developed your own "media literacy" lesson plan, I would be happy to post it to my site.

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Patrick Lysons's picture
Patrick Lysons
Academic English Teacher @ adjudicated youth center, Elko, Nevada

I am using visual media and feature films to teach literature with at risk youth at a juvenile detention center in Nevada. The traditional is linked with the non-traditional. I identify the types of visual/media literacies that I think are essential in both print and non-print media texts. I use a Backward Assessment Lesson Plan which focuses on one or more central questions prior to the film/media being shown. In addition, I use graphic organizers to follow plot, character development, themes, symbols, and the use of literary techniques common to both film and printed texts. It's working and working well. I've been doing this for six years now and had to overcome a lot of resistence to the idea of "film in the classroom". Many thought of it as only passively baby-sitting a class. That is far from the truth. Media study is critical, I think, to 21st century methods of teaching in literature, history, and English classes in general.

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