INF 533 – Task 4 – Part A – The thinking

THE THINKING

Citation:  

Templeton, T. (2020). White Australia Policy [Sway]. Daramalan College Teacher Resources. Daramalan College Library. Canberra.

 The Immigration Restriction Act of 1901 was one of the first pieces of legislation created by the newly formed Australian Federal Government and is the main focus of this digital narrative (DN).  Commonly referred to as the White Australia Policy (WAP), the Act was designed to maintain racial homogeneity and the economic value of the Australian man (Fong, 2018).   Whilst the Act is addressed in Year 10 History and Senior Modern History, the cognitive and curriculum focus of this DST is aimed at the 9/10 History Unit of work – Australia – From Federation to the Bicentennial  (ACARA, 2014a; ACARA; 2014b).  The utilisation of a multimodal DN in a  flipped classroom (FC) dynamic was a strategic ploy to encourage student ownership of learning, approach sensitive content suitably, promote collegial discussion, and allow the teacher to meet the needs of a diverse classroom (Gonzales, 2016; Schmidt and Ralph, 2016, p.1).    

Pedagogy 

Digital storytelling (DST) is an emerging pedagogical practice that effectively combines technology and literary work for use in recreational, personal or educational endeavours (Ciccorico, 2012; Ohler, 2013, p.94).  It is the modern adaptation of oral traditions, and the use of the narrative structure promotes reflective processes whilst communicating content in a manner that meets the cognitive, behavioural and developmental needs of students (Vidales-Bolanos and Sadaba-Chalezquer, 2017).  DST promotes Information Communication Technology (ICT) acuity, competency in digital literacies and a participatory culture, as it encourages students to move beyond passive consumption and into interacting and creating with it (Leu et al., 2011; Hashim and Vongkulluksn, 2018).  

 A DN created with Microsoft Sway allows students to interact with the different literacies and interactive elements, furthering valuable 21st century skills and improving the quality of transactions between the narrative and the reader (Ciccorico, 2012; Moran et al., 2020).   The format allows for the successful integration of visual and audio resources, and the use of personal devices increases teen engagement because technology is intrinsically linked to a teen’s social capital  (Moran et al., 2020, p.6; Vidales-Bolanos and Sadaba-Chalezquer, 2017).    

 Classroom Context 

Flipped classrooms (FC) are a transformative student centred teaching strategy with two distinct components, an external technology-based component followed by an interactive section (Ozdamli and Asiksoy, 2016, p.99; Schmidt and Ralph, 2016, p1.).   This inverted learning sequence allows students to gain access to the content prior to the lesson, which then allows for the teacher to facilitate discussion and meet the varying needs of the students (Basal, 2015; Schmidt and Ralph, 2016, p.1).  Implementing FC also allows student learning and engagement to be observed, documented and any misconceptions clarified (Leask, 2014).   As Schmidt & Ralph (2006, p.1) point out, guided discussion is essential for all students but especially for low literacy and ability students.  FC are constructivist in nature, self-paced, promote student ownership of learning and build critical study skills which are essential for lifelong learning (Basal, 2015).  

  Digital Technologies 

Digital technologies and multimodal resources (MR) are an integral aspect of DN and other modern classroom pedagogies (Ibrahim, 2020).  MR can be static, such as picture books and graphic novels, or dynamic such as SwayPowerpointThinglinkdigital textbooks, and interactive websites (Ibrahim, 2020).  This DN utilises Sway and Thinglink because the software programs embed together well, and their combined interactivity promotes engagement as well as encourage gestural manipulation to access information (Ibrahim, 2012; Heick, 2017).  

 The resources themselves do not espouse learning.  Instead it is the juxtaposition of media which conveys information at the correct level and the subsequent class discussion that has the greatest impact on student learning (Mayer and Morena, 2005; Ibrahim, 2012).  When multimodal information complement and enhance each other, the brain is able to decode, deduce, categorise and construct this new information efficiently upon prior knowledge and thereby reducing the cognitive load (Mayer and Morena, 2005; Ibrahim 2012; David, 2020).  But when the varying forms of media have less than optimum layout and delivery, the brain becomes overloaded and processing time increases leading to an increased cognitive load leading to lower comprehension and failure to make meaning (David, 2020).  Therefore, it is important that DN created for use in a classroom setting utilise the multimedia principles to ensure cognitive load is maintained for optimum intellectual performance (Ibrahim, 2012; Heick, 2017). 

 School Context – Students 

Daramalan College is a culturally diverse co-educational high school with many students’ descendants of the post war immigration schemes (ABS, 2016).  Therefore, discretion and finesse are required when addressing outdated perceptions of race and ethnic diversity.  The utilisation of a DST in a FC allows the student to process the information privately and then engage in discussion to develop further understanding.  

 School Context – Technology: 

Sway was selected due to its inclusion in the school’s subscription to Microsoft Office and that it can be successfully catalogued into the library management system.  This meets the requirements dictated by the school’s Collection Management and Development Policy.  Other benefits include its intuitiveness, ease of use and ability to integrate multimodal resources.   

REFERENCES: 

ACARA. (2014)a. HASS – History Curriculum. F-10 Curriculum. Educational Services Australia. Retrieved from https://www.australiancurriculum.edu.au/f-10-curriculum/humanities-and-social-sciences/history/ 

ACARA. (2014b). Modern History Unit 4 – HASS. Senior Secondary Curriculum. Educational Services Australia. Retrieved from https://www.australiancurriculum.edu.au/senior-secondary-curriculum/humanities-and-social-sciences/modern-history/ 

Australian Bureau of Statistics. (2016). 2016 Census Quick Stats – Australia Capital Territory (No. 8ACTE). Retrieved from https://quickstats.censusdata.abs.gov.au/census_services/getproduct/census/2016/quickstat/8ACTE?opendocument. 

Basal, A. (2015). The implementation of a flipped classroom in foreign language teaching. Turkish Online Journal of Distance Education 16 (4). DOI:: 10.17718/tojde.72185 

Ciccoricco, D. (2012). Chapter 34 – Digital fiction – networked narratives. In Bray, J., Gibbons, A., & McHale, B. (2012). The Routledge Companion to Experimental Literature. Taylor & Francis eBooks. Retrieved from CSU Library. 

Cornet, C. E. (2014). Integrating the literary arts throughout the curriculum. In Creating meaning through literature and the arts: arts integration for Classroom teachers (5th ed,) pp144-193. USA 

David, L. (2020). Cognitive theory of multimedia learning (Mayer). Learning Theories. Retrieved from https://www.learning-theories.com/cognitive-theory-of-multimedia-learning-mayer.html 

 Fong, N. (2018). The significance of the Northern Territory in the formulation of ‘White Australia’s Policies’ 1880-1901. Australian Historical Studies, 49 (4), p.527-545. Retrieved from https://www.tandfonline.com/doi/abs/10.1080/1031461X.2018.1515963 

Gonzalez, J. (2016). Graphic novels in the classroom. [Blog] Cult of Pedagogy. Retrieved from https://www.cultofpedagogy.com/teaching-graphic-novels/ 

Hashim, A., & VongKulluskn, V. (2018). E reader apps and reading engagement: A descriptive case study. Computers and Education 125, pp.358-375. Retrieved from https://www.journals.elsevier.com/computers-and-education/ 

Heick, T. (2017). What is cognitive load theory? A definition for teachers. TeachThought. Retrieved from https://www.teachthought.com/learning/cognitive-load-theory–definition-teachers/ 

Ibrahim, M. (2012). Implications of designing instructional video using cognitive theory of multimedia learning. Critical Questions in Education 3(2), p.83-104. Retrieved from https://eric.ed.gov/?id=EJ1047003 

Leask, A. (2014). 5 reasons why the flipped classroom benefits educators. Enable Education – Online learning solutions. Retrieved from https://www.enableeducation.com/5-reasons-why-the-flipped-classroom-benefits-educators/ 

Leu, D.J., Forzani, E., Timbrell, N., & Maykel, C. (2015). Seeing the forest, not the trees: Essential technologies for literacy in primary grade and upper elementary grade classroom. Reading Teacher 69: (2), p.139-145. Retrieved from https://eric.ed.gov/?id=EJ1073399. 

Mannheim, M. (2020). Canberra is expanding Australia’s biggest free public WiFi network but how many people use it? ABC News Canberra. Retrieved from https://www.abc.net.au/news/2020-08-13/canberra-expands-free-wifi-but-fewer-people-are-using-it/12551266 

Mayer, R., & Moreno, R. (1998). A Cognitive Theory of Multimedia Learning: Implications for Design Principles. CHI 1998. DOI:10.1177/1463499606066892 

Mayer, R., & Moreno, R. (2005). A cognitive theory of multimedia learning; Implications for design principles. Retrieved from https://www.researchgate.net/publication/248528255_A_Cognitive_Theory_of_Multimedia_Learning_Implications_for_Design_Principles 

Moran, R., Lamie, C., Robertson, L., & Tai, C. (2020). Narrative writing, digital storytelling, and coding: Increasing motivation with young readers and writers. Australian Literacy Educators Association, 25 (2), p.6-10. Retrieved from https://primo.csu.edu.au/permalink/61CSU_INST/15aovd3/cdi_gale_infotracacademiconefile_A627277934 

NSW Migration Heritage Centre. (2010). Australian migration history timeline – 1945-1965. Powerhouse Museum Collections. Retrieved from http://www.migrationheritage.nsw.gov.au/exhibition/objectsthroughtime-history/1945-1965/index.html 

Ohler, J.B. (2013). Digital storytelling in the classroom. New media pathways to literacy, learning, and creativity (2nd ed.). Thousand Oaks, CA: Corwin. Retrieved from https://primo.csu.edu.au/permalink/61CSU_INST/1hkg98a/alma991012780180302357 

Ozdamli, F., & Asiksoy, G. (2016). Flipped classroom approach. World Journal on Educational TechnologyCurrent Issues. 8(2), p98-105. Retrieved from https://files.eric.ed.gov/fulltext/EJ1141886.pdf 

Schmidt, S. & Ralph, D. (2016). The flipped classroom: a twist on teaching. Contemporary Issues in Education Research. 9(1). Retrieved from https://files.eric.ed.gov/fulltext/EJ1087603.pdf 

Vidales-Bolanos, M., & Sadaba-Chalezquer, C. (2017). Connected Teens: Measuring the Impact of Mobile Phones on Social Relationships through Social Capital. Media Education Research Journal 53(25). Retrieved by https://files.eric.ed.gov/fulltext/EJ1171085.pdf 

Reviewing Digital Literature – White Australia Policy [Sway].

This resources was assessed using the guidelines set out by this RUBRIC

Citation: 

Templeton, T. (2020). White Australia Policy [Sway]. 

 

General Selection Criteria: Digital Literature Selection Criteria:
Teaching and Learning Needs 50/50 Learning, literacy and language development: 45/50
Curriculum Needs 20/20 Format enhances the learning: 15/20
School Needs: 20/20 Features enhance the learning: 20/20
C/W School Ethos. 8/10 Price: Free  10/10

Summary: 

The White Australia Policy [sway] is an internally created teacher resource for use in conjunction with a flipped classroom setting. Designed as the pre-lesson task for the Year 9/10 History – “From Federation to Bicentennial”, this digital narrative contains a variety of primary sources, news clippings, videos, radio interviews and infographics about the different local and global perspectives surrounding the White Australia Policy.  The resource is a valuable teaching tool but needs to be accompanied by a teacher facilitated class discussion in order to gain optimum values. 

Curriculum links:
9/10 History –

 (ACDSEH092)

 (ACDSEE 145)

Senior History –

ACHMH123 & ACHMH125 (Senior Modern History – Unit 3)

 ACHMH194 & ACHMH195 (Senior Modern History – Unit 4)

 

Learning, Literacy and Language:

The White Australia Policy [Sway] is a linear interactive digital narrative that has two main purposes.  The overt purpose is to assist students through the various perspectives of Australian and world history to understand the reasoning behind the legislation and implementation of this Policy.   The variance in viewpoints allow the students to develop their own conclusion about this historical event using the range of primary and secondary sources (Lamb, 2011).  The covert purpose of this narrative is to facilitate literacy development by promoting literacy, academic writing and critical thinking. 

The narrative facilitates literacy development by the use of complementing images, audio and textual elements, and the integration of the teacher as narrator is a direct attempt to use prior rapport to connect the students to the content (Ibrahim, 2012; Mangen et al., 2013).  This congruence of information is more effective at promoting knowledge and comprehension as the complementing audio and textual elements allow the student to experience the benefits of a read aloud in the privacy of their own home (Rhodes, 2019; Ibrahim, 2012).   Whilst the language used within the resource is diverse and subject specific, it may be difficult for students with learning or developmental needs to process, and thus it would have been beneficial to have hyperlinks available to assist with comprehension (Fitzsimmons, Weal & Drieghe, 2019). 

 The Sway’s textual elements with its formal tone, in text citations and use of subject specific vocabulary were designed to provide an archetype of academic writing (Cutler, 2019).   Literacy Toolkit (2019) recommends the use of modelled writing as an explicit teaching strategy to address elements of writing such as sequence, linking ideas and vocabulary choice.  It allows students who lack confidence in their writing to learn strategies and techniques that they can use in their own writing (Literacy Toolkit, 2019).  It also allows those students who lack familiarity with in text citations to experience how citations are intext and referenced.  

 Digital narratives like this Sway combines emerging technology and literary works in a manner that improves critical thinking and 21st century literacies (Moran et al., 2020; Ciccorico, 2012).  As students navigate through the various modalities, they experience a variety of primary sources that would be viewed as discriminatory in modern Australia.  The blatant racial stereotyping evident in some of the primary sources may cause some students distress.  This transmedia resource will challenge student’s perceptions of Australian history, as well as develop their critical thinking and digital literacies (Kopka, 2014). 

Technology trends.

Ross Johnston (2014) and Leu et al., (2015) point out that the inclusion of interactive digital literature into educational practices meets the modern societal paradigm and allows students to develop valuable 21st century skills.  The use of transmedia sources such as this Sway would benefit students by developing their critical thinking, experiential learning and their digital literacy (Cullen, 2015; Pietschmann, Volker & Ohler, 2014; Kopka, 2014; Leu et al., 2015).

Resource Integration:

The White Australia Policy [sway] is a teacher created digital narrative and is freely available on the school intranet with no licensing limitations making it a very thrifty resource.  It can be integrated into the library management system, class intranet pages and into any of the Microsoft office suite. It is also accessible from all personal devices and can be exported to Word and printed out for students who are disadvantaged by the digital divide (DIIS, 2016).  

 

Recommendation:

The White Australia Policy [sway] would be a valuable addition to the school collection. 

References:

Cullen, M. (2015, December 21). How is interactive media changing the way children learn. In EducationTechnology. Retrieved from https://educationtechnologysolutions.com.au/2015/12/how-is-interactive-media-changing-the-way-children-learn/

Cutler, D. (2019). Modeling writing and revising for students. Edutopia. Retrieved from https://www.edutopia.org/article/modeling-writing-and-revising-students

Department of Industry, Innovation and Science. (2016). Australia’s digital economy update. Retrieved from https://apo.org.au/sites/default/files/resource-files/2016/05/apo-nid66202-1210631.pdf

Fitzsimmons, G., Weal, M., & Drieghe, D. (2019). The impact of hyperlinks on reading text. PLOS ONE. Retrieved from https://journals.plos.org/plosone/article?id=10.1371/journal.pone.0210900

Ibrahim, M. (2012). Implications of designing instructional video using cognitive theory of multimedia learning. Critical Questions in Education 3(2), p.83-104. Retrieved from https://eric.ed.gov/?id=EJ1047003

Kopka, S. & Hobbs, R., (2014). Transmedia & Education: Using Transmedia in the Classroom with a Focus on Interactive Literature [Blog]. SeKopka. Retrieved from https://sekopka.wordpress.com/2014/05/07/transmedia-education-using-transmedia-in-the-classroom-with-a-focus-on-interactive-literature/

Lamb, A. (2011). Reading re-defined for a transmedia universe. Learning & Leading with Technology 39(3), p.12-17. Retrieved from https://eric.ed.gov/?id=EJ954320

Leu, D.J, Forzani, E., Timbrell, N., & Maykel., C. (2015) . Seeing the forest, not the trees: Essential technologies for literacy in primary grade and upper elementary grade classroom. Reading Teacher 69: (2), p.139-145. Retrieved from https://eric.ed.gov/?id=EJ1073399

Literacy Teaching Toolkit. (2019). Modelled writing. Victorian Department of Education. Retrieved from https://www.education.vic.gov.au/school/teachers/teachingresources/discipline/english/literacy/writing/Pages/teachingpracmodelled.aspx

Mangen, A., Walgermo, B. R. & Bronnick, K.A. (2013). Reading linear texts on paper versus computer screen: Effects on reading comprehension. International Journal of Educational Research, 58, 61-68.doi:10.1016/j.ijer.2012.12.002 

Pietschmann, D., Volkel, S., & Ohler, P. (2014). Limitations of transmedia storytelling for children: A cognitive development analysis. International Journal of Communication 8, p.2259-2282. Retrieved from https://www.researchgate.net/publication/279323387_Limitations_of_Transmedia_Storytelling_for_Children_A_Cognitive_Developmental_Analysis

Rhodes, G. (2019). Why I read aloud to my teenagers. The Guardian. Retrieved from https://www.theguardian.com/lifeandstyle/2019/feb/09/why-i-read-aloud-to-my-teenagers

Ross Johnston, R. (2014a). Chapter 23 – Literature, the curriculum and 21st-century literacy. In G. Winch, R. Ross Johnston, P. March, L. Ljungdahl & M. Holliday (Eds.), Literacy: Reading, writing and children’s literature (5th ed., pp. 472-489). Melbourne: Oxford University Press. 

 

 

Creating a digital narrative – The good, the bad and the ugly.

Creating a digital narrative requires planning. 

Creating a digital narrative for classroom practice requires extensive planning.  

Creating a digital narrative for a university assignment that can also be used for classroom practice turns a teetotaler into a wino. 

The creation of a digital narrative (DN) for education practice requires the teacher to consider the curriculum content, the needs of the student, the digital technologies available and their own individual ICT acuity. 


It requires:

  1. A clear understanding of which parts of the curriculum need to be addressed, content or skills (or both)
  2. The cognitive, behavioural and developmental needs of the students.
  3. The technological capabilities of the school such as BYOD policies and wifi capabilities.
  4.   It also requires the educator to acknowledge their own capability and find ways to work within their capacity.  This last fact is often crucial as many teachers feel that creation of interactive media is beyond their capability and therefore abstain from using DST in classroom practice (Hyndman, 2018)

Part 1: Curriculum 

Whilst there are many pedagogical strategies in which an educator can introduce DN or DST into classroom practice, the most effective method for teacher librarians to use is the Backwards Design Process (BPD), or otherwise known as backwards by design.  BPD can be utilised across all areas of the curriculum and is often used by teacher librarians as a method of developing information literacy lessons  (Gooudzward, 2019).  Therefore it seemed like the sensible way to create this DN due to my familiarity with the process. 

  • The identification of the learning outcomes in both content and skills strands of the 10 History curriculum (ACARA, 2014).  
  • Once the learning outcomes were identified, the method and process of evaluating these learning outcomes needed to be determined. 


  • Kurt (2018) and Gooudzward (2019) both point out the importance of ‘ranking’ the outcomes and then correlating them to the complexity of the assessment.  The use of Bloom’s taxonomy would be useful here to help differentiate the learning. 

  • Now the learning events can be planned.  Considerations should include the type of learning that would suit this unit such as blended learning, explicit instruction, inquiry learning or the use of flipped classroom.  

Part B – Student Needs – Pedagogy that works. 

When creating or using DST, acknowledging the needs of the students is a fundamental part of pedagogical practice.  The White Australia Policy was a very inflammatory legislation and requires finesse and discretion when addressing it in a classroom setting.  Students who are recent immigrants or those that were descendants of those restricted by the White Australia Policy may need time and space to process this information.  The use of a flipped classroom as a pedagogical strategy allows for the embedding of a DST for students to access prior to the lesson (Schmidt & Ralph, 2016, p.1).  This gives the student time and space to process the information privately and the integrated questions promote critical thinking.  This strategy also promotes analysis and evaluation of the policy as well as time for the teacher to facilitate class discussion and address the needs of a diverse classroom (Basal, 2015).

Part C: Technological capacities.  

The use of Microsoft Sway was based on expediency.  My school has a subscription to Microsoft and the students have already engaged with the program in other disciplines.  The format allows for the successful integration of images, videos, audio, hyperlinks and Thinglink.  It can be accessed from any personal device connected to the internet, is intuitive to use and can be successfully integrated into the school intranet, class pages and can be cataloged into the library management system.

The school has a BYOD policy and excellent wifi, so there should be minimal issues accessing this resource.

Part D:  Teacher Competence

Cantabrana et al., (2018) point out that the quality of education in the 21st century is directly linked to teacher education and training.  Teachers that have been supported in their professional learning and development to integrate DL into their practice are more likely to use it successfully (Cantabrana et al., 2018).   Competence in ICT involves positive attitudes to technology as well as combing conceptual and procedural knowledge (Cantabrana et al., 2018, p.77; McGarr & McDonagh, 2019, p.11).  This means that teachers that are reluctant to use ICT from either lack of knowledge or lack of interest are less likely to want to improve their capability and extremely unlikely to create and foster the use of DL and DST in their classroom practice.  

McGarr & McDonagh (2019)  point out that teacher competence should be framed around three main areas, technological, cognitive and ethical.  This makes sense as creating a digital narrative requires the teacher to be competent at combining curriculum with technology, whilst ensuring copyright is addressed appropriately (McGarr & McDonagh, 2019, p.13).  

References:

ACARA. (2014b). HASS – History Curriculum. F-10 Curriculum. Educational Services Australia. Retrieved from https://www.australiancurriculum.edu.au/f-10-curriculum/humanities-and-social-sciences/history/

Basal, A. (2015). The implementation of a flipped classroom in foreign language teaching. Turkish Online Journal of Distance Education 16 (4). DOI:: 10.17718/tojde.72185

Cantabrana, JL., Rodriguez, M., & Cervera, M.G. (2018). Assessing teacher digital competence: the construction of an instrument for measuring the knowledge of pre-service teachers. Journal of New Approaches in Educational Research. 8(1), p73-78. Retrieved from https://files.eric.ed.gov/fulltext/EJ1202957.pdf

Goudzwaard, M. (2019). Slides: Backward design for librarians. New England Library Instruction Group 2. Retrieved from https://scholarworks.umass.edu/cgi/viewcontent.cgi?article=1052&context=nelig

Hyndman, B. (2018). Ten reasons teachers can struggle to use technology in the classroom. The Conversation [Blog]. Retrieved from https://theconversation.com/ten-reasons-teachers-can-struggle-to-use-technology-in-the-classroom-101114

Kurt, S. (2018). What is backward design. Educational Technology. Teaching and Learning Resources.  Retrieved from https://educationaltechnology.net/backward-design-understanding-by-design/

McGarr, O., & McDonagh, A. (2019). Digital competence in teacher education.  Output 1 of the Erasmus+ funded Developing Student Teachers’ Digital Competence (DICTE) project.  Retrieved from https://www.researchgate.net/publication/331487411_Digital_Competence_in_Teacher_Education

Schmidt, S. & Ralph, D. (2016). The flipped classroom: a twist on teaching. Contemporary Issues in Education Research. 9(1). Retrieved from https://files.eric.ed.gov/fulltext/EJ1087603.pdf

 

Flipping it around – How flipping a classroom can change the way students learn.

 

Technology has become an integral part of education and many teachers have made the conscious decision to integrate emerging technologies inventively within their professional practice.  Basal (2015) believes that technology enriched learning environments increase the learning opportunities for students, as it allows them to improve their ICT acuity, increases their engagement with the content and provides valuable classroom discussion time.  One such way of integrating technology in a meaningful manner is the use of flipped learning or flipped classrooms.  

By inverting the learning sequence, students gain access to the content prior to the lesson which allows them to address the understanding in the lesson

Flipping the classroom means flipping the process of learning.

 

This access to content occurs in a personalised, student centred manner through a variety of methods, including the reading course notes, and the accessing videos or other multimedia (Basal, 2015).  Flipped classrooms follow a constructivist approach to learning as students are required to take ownership by accessing the content in their own time, at their own pace  (Basal, 2015).  This self paced approach increases the likelihood of students making those valuable connections between new content and prior knowledge, and therefore improving their overall learning outcomes.  

Flipped learning student centred approach can be seen clearly during class time, where the student is able to apply their knowledge and understanding to the learning activities.  Additionally, as Leask (2014) points out, student engagement and learning is easier to observe and document when teachers are able to view them applying their knowledge.  By addressing content earlier, the teacher is able to assist individual students with cementing their understanding and clarifying misconceptions  (Schmidt & Ralph, 2016, p.1).  The other advantage is that the students are required to take responsibility for their own learning by accessing the content in their own time and prior to the lesson.  

Flipped Classrooms changes the role of the teacher from font of knowledge to facilitator of learning.

 

There are several benefits to using a flipped classroom in pedagogical practice.  One benefit to implementing this strategy is that it reduces or eliminates the ineffective lecturing teaching style (Basal, 2015).  The lecture format is a very traditional form of teaching and alludes to the illusion that the teacher is the font of knowledge, and the student the receptacle receiving the information in a passive manner.  Flipped classrooms, as Basal (2015) points out, requires the teacher to become a facilitator and organiser of content, rather than a font of content.  This role reversal changes the classroom dynamics from a teacher centred to a student centred approach.  

The student centred approach is visible throughout the strategy.  Leask (2014) points out that student engagement and learning is easier to observe and document when teachers are able to view interactions in class discussions and thereby assess the quality of interactions the student has made with the content prior to the lesson.  The early delivery of content also facilitates learning as the teacher is able to assist individual students with cementing their understanding and clarifying misconceptions, which is essential for low ability and low literacy students (Schmidt & Ralph, 2016, p.1).  This guided class discussion and application is very provident for students that are unable to receive assistance at home for their learning.  Flipped classrooms increase learning outcomes as students are required to take responsibility for their own learning and that students gain confidence in class discussions due to the prior access to content material (Basal, 2015, p.32). 

An indirect positive consequence of flipped learning is that the creation of videos for students to access prior to the lesson also provides access to content for students who are unable to attend school due to illness or personal circumstances (Schmidt & Ralph, 2016, p.1).  Prior to 2020, remote learning and remote access to content was not a priority but with the recent pandemic and resulting lockdown, flexible and adaptable learning have become a concern for many teachers across the country.

Whilst there are many benefits to using flipped classrooms in pedagogical practice, there are concerns.  The primary issue is the creation of resources such as videos and other forms of multimedia to deliver the content.  Schmidt & Ralph (2016) point out that even though the making of videos can be extremely time consuming, teachers should not divert to mundane Powerpoints and repetitive videos as they can lead to student boredom and disengagement.  Another issue is that students can be disinclined to access the coursework prior to the lesson, and this disinclination can affect the vibrancy of the class learning and discussion (Ozdamli & Asiksoy, 2016).  Another major concern with implementing flipped learning in pedagogical practice is access to personal devices and reliable internet outside of school.  This makes accessing these resources such as online videos and other multimedia texts difficult for First Nations students, learners from lower socioeconomic families as well as rural and remote areas (DIIS, 2016).  

More than just videos – Flipped lessons promote complex reasoning and problem solving.

 

Successful flipped classrooms are more than just the creation and dispersal of didactic videos outside the classroom. Rather it is the collaborative learning and classroom discussion that is provoked by the content material that occurs in the classroom that makes flipped learning successful (Basal, 2015).  It is about the students being able to clarify their understanding and address any misconceptions that they may have.  Flipped learning requires both the student and teacher to adapt their perspective of teaching and gives teachers additional class time to focus on making meaning of new information in a student centred manner (Basel, 2015).   It requires students to be proactive, engage with the content prior to the class, and in discussion during the class.  It requires teachers to be willing to experiment with technologies, and relinquish didacticism in favour for constructivism.  Flipped classrooms will not meet the needs of all students and their teachers, but it is will work for the majority.  

REFERENCES:

Basal, A. (2015). The implementation of a flipped classroom in foreign language teaching. Turkish Online Journal of Distance Education 16 (4). DOI:: 10.17718/tojde.72185

Department of Industry, Innovation and Science. (2016). Australia’s digital economy update. Retrieved from https://apo.org.au/sites/default/files/resource-files/2016/05/apo-nid66202-1210631.pdf

Leask, A. (2014). 5 reasons why the flipped classroom benefits educators. Enable Education – Online learning solutions. Retrieved from https://www.enableeducation.com/5-reasons-why-the-flipped-classroom-benefits-educators/

Lo, C. K. (2017). A critical review of flipped classroom challenges in K-12 education: possible solutions and recommendations for future research. Research and Practice in Technology Enhanced Learning 12 (4). Retrieved from https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC6302872/pdf/41039_2016_Article_44.pdf

Ozdamli, F., & Asiksoy, G. (2016). Flipped classroom approach. World Journal on Educational Technology: Current Issues. 8(2), p98-105. Retrieved from https://files.eric.ed.gov/fulltext/EJ1141886.pdf

Schmidt, S. & Ralph, D. (2016). The flipped classroom: a twist on teaching. Contemporary Issues in Education Research. 9(1). Retrieved from https://files.eric.ed.gov/fulltext/EJ1087603.pdf

Szparagowski, R. (2014). The effectiveness of the flipped classroom. Bowling Green State University Scholar Works. Retrieved from https://scholarworks.bgsu.edu/cgi/viewcontent.cgi?article=1118&context=honorsprojects

 

Reflection – Reviewing Digital Literature for a High School Library.

Reviewing Digital Literature for a High School Library.

congerdesign / Pixabay

 

A teacher librarian (TL) is tasked with ensuring the collection development and management policy (CDMP) suits the needs of the curriculum and the school community (Johnson, 2018).  

Whilst the curation of the physical collection is well established, the rapidly evolving nature of digital resources makes the selection of digital literature (DL) more challenging.  This complexity arises from the variety of emerging DL trends and their integration into the library management system (LMS) (Johnson, 2018, p.128; Hughes-Hassell & Mancall, 2005).   

geralt / Pixabay

There has been much controversy regarding the efficacy of digital literature (DL) in education.  Jeon (2012) suggests that DL has lower rates of comprehension in comparison to print, but Ross et al., (2017) believes that there is no notable difference between print, screen and tablet.  The discrepancy is based upon the role digitisation plays in comprehension.  Keen (2016) believes that digitisation increases engagement, improves learning outcomes and addresses the behavioural, cognitive and developmental needs of teenagers.  Whereas Mitchell (2011) points out that not all digital texts are superior to print texts, and that DL needs to be evaluated  against a set criteria to ensure that the enhancements promote the learning of literacy and language.  

A printed text requires:

  •  a single literacy to gain access to the information.   

However, DL needs the reader to be:

  • masterful with multiliteracies,
  •  competent with computation and 
  • dexterous with devices (Rettberg, 2012).  

These skill requirements indicate that poor traditional literacy will translate to poor digital literacy because technology virtuosity and digital aptitude are not intuitive  (Moore & Cahill, 2016, p.5; Brown & Czerniewicz, 2011).  This necessity of explicit instruction has thoroughly debunked the myth of the digital native.  

 

ACARA (2018) has included DL in the Australian Curriculum in an effort to address the multimodal and multiliteracy needs of the 21st century.  The embedding of DL allows students to use these new technologies to connect to the curriculum, develop multiliteracies and competencies, which are essential for active citizenship in a digital society (MCEETYA, 2008; Cullen; 2015).  Importantly, DL acknowledges students’ learning needs, the shift in the reading paradigm as well as the presence of participatory culture in modern society (O’Connell, Bates & Mitchell, 2015; Moore & Cahill, 2016, p.6). 

There are several pedagogical implications of utilising DL in teaching practice.  Visual ergonomics and information overload have significant impacts on the reader (Mangen, Walgermo & Bronnick., 2013).  Print texts have strong visual permanence which aids comprehension, but in nonlinear hypertext narratives such as After 6/4, the inability to ‘flip back’ is a hindrance.  However, both Schreuder’s digital novel and the Bible app provide linearity and a sequential storyline which facilitates text comprehension for low ability and literacy students (Gonzales, 2016; Botzakis, 2018).   

Information overload is an issue in After 6/4 and Land of the Magic Flute.  The multimodality of these resources require readers to critically evaluate the images, text and audio simultaneously, and this can overwhelm some students.   But in Schreuder’s digital graphic novel, the arias give the reader time to process the multimodal information, whereas in After 6/4, the format enables the reader to navigate at their own pace.

Peggy_Marco / PixabayFrom a pedagogical perspective, app based learning such as the YouVersion Bible app are ideal for teenagers in a Catholic High school  as it promotes engagement, increases motivation, provides access to online communities, allows for text anonymity and acknowledges the importance of a personal devices to a teenager’s social capital (Cullen, 2015; Vidales-Bolanos & Sadaba-Chalezquer, 2017; Yokota & Teale, 2014; Dickenson, 2014; Hashim & Vongkulluksn, 2018).  This app also satisfies the requirement of enhancing the learning of language, and the supplementary videos assist in decoding and comprehension for EAL/D and learning needs students  (Gonzales, 2016).  

The major hurdle to implementing this app across the school is that it is an app.  My school has a strong mobile phone policy due to persistent disciplinary issues (Selwyn, 2019).  The current criteria does not permit its inclusion even though this app meets the educational, behavioural and behavioural needs of the students, as well as addressing the content requirements.  This exclusion of this resource should question the validity of the CDMP and its selection criteria in this digital age (Johnson, 2018).

The reality is that teachers are very confused about young people and their literary preferences.  Dickenson (2014) and Earp (2017) both agree that teens favour print, whereas Twenge et al., (2019) suggests that the internet and interactive media are the preferred medium due to the prevalence of participatory culture.  But this preference does not always translate to successful classroom practice.  Whilst students may have a strong inclination for DL, not all formats aid the learning of literacy and language.   It would be poor professional practice to promote DL that impedes learning, just like its poor practice to exclude excellent resources due to an impediment in the CDMP.  

But then… I did just that. 

But then… I did just that. 

Sometimes our practice is as only good as the policies that frame it. 

References: 

Australian Curriculum, Assessment and Reporting Authority. (2018). Literacy. In Australian Curriculum. Retrieved from http://www.australiancurriculum.edu.au/generalcapabilities/literacy/introduction/introduction

Brown, C., & Czerniewicz, L. (2010). Debunking the ‘digital native’: beyond digital apartheid, towards digital democracy.  Journal of Computer Assisted Learning 26(5). DOI: https://doi.org/10.1111/j.1365-2729.2010.00369.x

Dickenson, D. (2014). Children and reading: Literature review. Australia Council 2014. Retrieved from https://www.australiacouncil.gov.au/workspace/uploads/files/research/children-and-reading-literatur-5432557e418db.pdf.

Earp, J. (2017). Infographic – Teen reading habits. Teacher Magazine. Australian Council for Educational Research.  Retrieved from https://www.teachermagazine.com.au/articles/infographic-teen-reading-habits

Botzakis, S. (2018). Comics in the classroom: Using graphic novels for content learning. In D. Wooten, B. Cullinan, L. Liang & R. Allington (Eds).  Children’s literature in the reading program: Engaging young readers in the 21st century, (5th ed., pp. 140-152). Retrieved from Proquest Ebook Central.

Cullen, M. (2015, December 21). How is interactive media changing the way children learn. In EducationTechnology. Retrieved from https://educationtechnologysolutions.com.au/2015/12/how-is-interactive-media-changing-the-way-children-learn/

Gonzalez, J. (2016, October 9). Graphic novels in the classroom: A teacher roundtable. Cult of Pedagogy. Retrieved from https://www.cultofpedagogy.com/teaching-graphic-novels/

Hashim, A & VongKulluskn, V. (2018). E reader apps and reading engagement: A descriptive case study. Computers and Education, 125, pp.358-375. Retrieved from https://www.journals.elsevier.com/computers-and-education

Hughes-Hassell, S., & Mancall, J. C. (2005). Collection management for youth : Responding to the needs of learners. Retrieved from https://ebookcentral.proquest.com

Jabr, F. (2013). The reading brain in the digital age: The science of paper versus screens. Scientific American. Retrieved from https://www.scientificamerican.com/article/reading-paper-screens/

Jeon, H. (2012). A comparison of the influence of electronic books and paper books on reading comprehension, eye fatigue, and perception. The Electronic Library, 30(3), 390-408. doi: 10.1108/02640471211241663 

Johnson, P. (2018). Chapter 4 – Developing Collections. Fundamentals of Collection Development 4th Edition. ALA Editions. Chicago. Retrieved from EBSCOhost Books.   

Keen, N. (2016). Stopping the slide: improving reading rates in the middle school. Connections, 99. Retrieved from https://www.scisdata.com/connections/issue-99/stopping-the-slide-improving-reading-rates-in-the-middle-school/

Mangen, A., Walgermo, B. R., & Bronnick, K.A. (2013). Reading linear texts on paper versus computer screen: Effects on reading comprehension. International Journal of Educational Research, 58, 61-68.doi:10.1016/j.ijer.2012.12.002 

Mantei, J., Kipscombe, K., & Kervin, L. (2018). Literature in a digital environment (Ch. 13). In L. McDonald (Ed.), A literature companion for teachers. Marrickville, NSW: Primary English Teaching Association Australia (PETAA).

MCEETYA. (2008). Melbourne Declaration on Educational Goals for Young Australians. Curriculum Corporation. Australia. Retrieved from http://www.curriculum.edu.au/verve/_resources/national_declaration_on_the_educational_goals_for_young_australians.pdf

Mitchell, P. (2011). Resourcing 21st century online Australian Curriculum: the role of school libraries. FYI: The Journal for School Information Professionals 15(2). Retrieved from CSU Library. 

Moore, J., & Cahill, M. (2016). Audiobooks; Legitimate ‘reading’ material for adolescents? Research Journal of the American Association of School Librarians. Retrieved from www.ala.org/aasl/slr/volume19/moore-cah

Moorefield-Lang, H., & Gavigan, K. (2012). These aren’t your father’s: the new world of digital graphic novels. Knowledge Quest, 40(3), 30-35. Retrieved from http://web.b.ebscohost.com.ezproxy.csu.edu.au/ehost/detail/detail?vid=0&sid=b349502e-3dd2-48d3-9d9a-6beed7db31cc%40pdc-v-sessmgr05&bdata=JnNpdGU9ZWhvc3QtbGl2ZQ%3d%3d#AN=82563984&db=lih

O’Connell, J., Bales, J., Mitchell, P. (2015). [R]Evolution in reading cultures: 2020 vision for school libraries. The Australian Library Journal, 63(3), 194-208. DOI: 10.1080/00049670.2015.1048043

Rettberg, J.W. (2012). Electronic literature seen from a distance: the beginnings of a field. Retrieved from http://www.dichtung-digital.org/2012/41/walker-rettberg.ht

Ross, B., Pechenkina, E., Aeschliman, C., & Chase, A. (2017).  Print versus digital texts: understanding the experimental research and challenging the dichotomies. Research in Learning Technology 25. DOI: https://doi.org/10.25304/rlt.v25.1976. Retrieved from https://journal.alt.ac.uk/index.php/rlt/article/view/1976/pdf_1

Selwyn, N. (2019). Banning mobile phones in schools: Beneficial or risky? SBS News. Retrieved from https://www.sbs.com.au/news/banning-mobile-phones-in-schools-beneficial-or-risky-here-s-what-the-evidence-says

Teen Reading In a Digital Era. (2017). Report at a glance – Teen Reading in a digital era. Murdoch University & Deakin University.  Retrieved from https://teenreadingdotnet.files.wordpress.com/2017/04/teen-reading-folio-report_email.pdf

Twenge, J., Martin, G., & Spitzberg, B. (2019). Trends in U.S. adolescents’ media use, 1976-2016: the rise of media, the decline of tv, and the (near) demise of print. Psychology of Popular Media Culture 8(4). p.329-345. Retrieved from https://www.apa.org/pubs/journals/releases/ppm-ppm0000203.pdf

Vidales-Bolanos, M., & Sadaba-Chalezquer, C. (2017). Connected Teens: Measuring the Impact of Mobile Phones on Social Relationships through Social Capital. Media Education Research Journal 53(25). Retrieved by https://files.eric.ed.gov/fulltext/EJ1171085.pdf

Yokota, J., & Teale, W. (2014). Picture books and the digital world. The Reading Teacher 67(8), pp.577-585.    DOI:  10.1002/trtr.1262   

 

 

Reviewing Digital Literature – After 6/4

 

RESOURCE 1 – After 6/4

Summary: 

After 6/4 is a collation of differing viewpoints of the Tiananmen Square event in Beijing 1989.  Created as an anniversary tribute, After 6/4 contains a range of primary sources, news headlines, videos and personal anecdotes using VR, animation, audio, 360 video and other archival storytelling (Chen & Heald, 2014).  This digital assemblage of  primary sources remains a valuable teaching tool about persuasive texts, multimodal media literacy, and even more so in the light of the recent Hong Kong protests.   

Curriculum Links:

  1. Asia and Australia’s Engagement with Asia:  (OI: 5 and 7)
  2. Year 8 English (ACELA1543)- Main value to collection.
  3. Year 9 Media Arts (ACAMAM073, ACAMAR078, ACAMAR079
  4. Year 9  History –  (ACDSEH146)
  5. Senior History curriculum – Unit 4.

Learning, Literacy and Language:

After 6/4 provides a vibrant learning experience as readers navigate their way through varied perspectives on a non-linear timeline.  The reader is required to assimilate the primary sources, make an evaluative decision and interact with the text.  This complex navigation requires higher-order thinking as students explore the multimodal perspectives, and correlate them to the state-sanctioned or author’s bias (Kopka, 2014).  After 6/4 clearly accentuates the power of persuasive language and its impact on the reader.  It also highlights the dichotomy of free press versus state sanctioned media, and requires the reader to develop their own conclusion about the complexity of historical and media partisanship that is pervasive in modern society (Lamb, 2011, p.15).  This transmedia resource challenges students to develop their multiliteracies, critical thinking skills, and understand essential media conventions (Kopka, 2014).  

It is popular knowledge that video and computer gaming are very popular with teenagers, and After 6/4  challenges young people to utilise their transliteracy expertise for educational needs (Kopka, 2014).  After 6/4 elicits the reader’s interest by requesting them to select their country of origin then linking to a range of multimodal media texts.  Readers are further rewarded by additional information as they ‘click’ through the timeline.  By offering language choices in both English and Mandarin, After 6/4 allows the reader to interact with the text without the need for a translator.  The resource is further supported by subtitles which promotes literacy development and helps lower literacy students engage with the content material. 

Interactive resources such as After 6/4 are useful in engaging disengaged learners and reluctant readers into subject matter than may normally be of limited interest to them (Kopka, 2014; Raja & Kumar, 2010).  The appeal arises from the rhetoric of grasping and gamification theory prevalent in many interactive websites, which has a positive correlation to motivation (Heckman & Bourchardon, 2012; Kopka, 2014). 

After 6/4 requires the reader to physically manipulate the screen making the interaction more maningful and further immersing the reader into the text.  This is because interactive and hypertext media allow the reader to encounter and practise both efferent and aesthetic reading practices,  which is essential for the development of both online and offline reading skills (Pietschmann, Volker & Ohler, 2014). Unfortunately, this immersive experience  and features such as, parallax scrolling, non linearity and lack of visual permanence require the teacher to provide  extensive scaffolding for students with learning disabilities (Raja & Kumar, 2010; Botzakis, 2018).  

 

Technology Trends:

The inclusion of interactive websites into classroom practice, advocates for the presence of technology as part of modern societal practices (Ross Johnston, 2014b, p.633).  Transmedia resources promote 21st century skills such as, experiential learning, critical thinking, as well as the development of trans-literacies (Cullen, 2015; Pietschmann, Volker & Ohler, 2014; Kopka, 2014; Leu et al., 2015).   Interactive media is a rapidly emerging digital format and needs to be part of education to ensure students develop the necessary skills for life in the 21st century (Leu et al., 2015). 

Resource Integration: 

After 6/4 is a locally produced interactive website and is freely available online with no licencing limitations, making it a very thrifty resources.  Interactive websites can be integrated into the library management systems, LibQuests and class intranet pages, as well as embedded into class documents, and accessible from a range of devices.  This makes After 6/4, a valuable teaching tool for digital and media literacy.  The only caveats are that this DL requires the internet to access and interact with, and this could be an issue for rural, remote and low income households (DIIS, 2016).  Therefore it would be recommended that After 6/4 is used in the classroom for teaching and learning rather than being tasked for homework.  Additionally, as the resource is found on the internet, there is no guarantee it will be freely available indefinitely so caution is required when unit planning.  

Recommendation: 

After 6/4  would be a suitable addition to a school collection.   

References:

ACARA. (2019). Cross curricular priorities – Asia and Australia’s engagement with Asia. F-10 Curriculum. Educational Services Australia.  Retrieved from https://www.australiancurriculum.edu.au/f-10-curriculum/cross-curriculum-priorities/asia-and-australia-s-engagement-with-asia/

ACARA. (2014a). English Curriculum. F-10 Curriculum. Educational Services Australia. Retrieved from https://australiancurriculum.edu.au/f-10-curriculum/english/?strand=Language&strand=Literature&strand=Literacy&capability=ignore&priority=ignore&elaborations=true

ACARA. (2014b). The Arts – Media Arts Curriculum. F-10 Curriculum. Educational Services Australia. Retrieved from https://www.australiancurriculum.edu.au/f-10-curriculum/the-arts/media-arts/

ACARA. (2014b). HASS – History Curriculum – Unit 4. F-10 Curriculum. Educational Services Australia. Retrieved from https://www.australiancurriculum.edu.au/f-10-curriculum/humanities-and-social-sciences/history/

ACARA. (2014c). Modern History – HASS. Senior Secondary Curriculum. Educational Services Australia. Retrieved from https://www.australiancurriculum.edu.au/senior-secondary-curriculum/humanities-and-social-sciences/modern-history/

Botzakis, S. (2018). Comics in the classroom: Using graphic novels for content learning. In D. Wooten, B. Cullinan, L. Liang & R. Allington (Eds).  Children’s literature in the reading program: Engaging young readers in the 21st century, (5th ed., pp. 140-152). Retrieved from Proquest Ebook Central.

Briggs, S. (2016). Using gaming principles to engage students. InformED [Blog]. Retrieved from https://www.opencolleges.edu.au/informed/features/using-gaming-principles-to-engage-students/

Cullen, M. (2015, December 21). How is interactive media changing the way children learn. In EducationTechnology. Retrieved from https://educationtechnologysolutions.com.au/2015/12/how-is-interactive-media-changing-the-way-children-learn/

Department of Industry, Innovation and Science. (2016). Australia’s digital economy update. Retrieved from https://apo.org.au/sites/default/files/resource-files/2016/05/apo-nid66202-1210631.pdf

Heckman, D., & Bouchardon, S. (2012). Digital manipulation and digital literature.  Electronic Book Review.  Retrieved from https://electronicbookreview.com/essay/digital-manipulability-and-digital-literature/

Kopka, S. & Hobbs, R., (2014). Transmedia & Education: Using Transmedia in the Classroom with a Focus on Interactive Literature [Blog]. SeKopka. Retrieved from https://sekopka.wordpress.com/2014/05/07/transmedia-education-using-transmedia-in-the-classroom-with-a-focus-on-interactive-literature/

Lamb, A. (2011). Reading re-defined for a transmedia universe. Learning & Leading with Technology 39(3), p.12-17. Retrieved from https://eric.ed.gov/?id=EJ954320

Leu, D.J, Forzani, E., Timbrell, N., & Maykel., C. (2015) . Seeing the forest, not the trees: Essential technologies for literacy in primary grade and upper elementary grade classroom. Reading Teacher 69: (2), p.139-145. Retrieved from https://eric.ed.gov/?id=EJ1073399

Pietschmann, D., Volkel, S., & Ohler, P. (2014). Limitations of transmedia storytelling for children: A cognitive development analysis. International Journal of Communication 8, p.2259-2282. Retrieved from https://www.researchgate.net/publication/279323387_Limitations_of_Transmedia_Storytelling_for_Children_A_Cognitive_Developmental_Analysis

Raja, B.W.D., & Kumar, S.P. (2010). Do multimedia applications benefit learning disabled children? Journal of Educational Technology 6 (4). Retrieved from https://eric.ed.gov/?id=EJ1098361

Ross Johnston, R. (2014a). Chapter 23 – Literature, the curriculum and 21st-century literacy. In G. Winch, R. Ross Johnston, P. March, L. Ljungdahl & M. Holliday (Eds.), Literacy: Reading, writing and children’s literature (5th ed., pp. 472-489). Melbourne: Oxford University Press. 

Ross Johnston, R. (2014b). Chapter 30 – Visual literacy: Reading the world of signs. In G. Winch, R. Ross Johnston, P. March, L. Ljungdahl & M. Holliday (Eds.), Literacy: Reading, writing and children’s literature (5th ed., pp. 618-636). Melbourne: Oxford University Press.

 

The Classroom Divide – What does it look like and what can we do about it?

 

Pexels / Pixabay – Classroom divide – How is your classroom divided?

 

For a period of time, society was of the opinion that people who grew up with technology would naturally be comfortable and confident using it as it was their native ‘language’.   These technically savvy individuals would require minimal instruction on digital literacy because as a cohort, they would approach digital technologies with intuitiveness and instinct.  

 

But that assumption was WRONG!  

 

Not just kinda wrong ..

BUT

EPICALLY WRONG!

Think

BIGGER THAN

CC BY-NC-SA 2.0

 

KIND OF WRONG.

 

But I digress… 

The myth of the digital native and digital immigrant has been thoroughly debunked (Kirschner & De Bruyckere, 2017).  They myth assumed that technology competence was inherent because of life long exposure to digital technologies (Frawley, 2020).  This bias is  based upon the common image of students permanently attached to their devices for social and personal practices, and does not translate to ICT proficiency in an educational setting (Brown & Czerniewicz, 2011).  

 

Day (2012) suggests that the theorised cause of the previous digital divide was between those with computer access and those without.  But most teachers would disagree.  Many students have access to smartphones and tablets for personal use and they are still flummoxed at using technology in their schooling.  It appears there is a clear lack of translation from social use of devices and technology to educational practices.  This is observable in the way students are familiar with keyboards for gaming purposes, but very few are highly accomplished at touch typing (onlinetyping.org, 2020).  It amazes me how some students can deftly play online games and switch their screens in milliseconds to avoid detection, but are unable to create and save a document to find at a later date.  Others can create a TikTok video, but do not understand the mechanics of boolean operators to search databases.  I have students that can surf the web for hours but are unable to read an article online in depth and the list just goes on….  All these examples clearly show that any correlations of age should not be translated to an assumption of digital literacy.   Digital literacy, as I have expounded on before, are the psychomotor, cognitive and affective skills required to use digital technologies successfully (McMahon, 2014, p.525).  Students and their parents who are technology savvy are more adept at navigating the digital world (Day, 2012). 

 

How the divide manifests: 

Educational professionals around the world have realised the impact the digital divide has had on learning outcomes (Steele, 2018).  In Australia, the divide was previously acknowledged in educational circles but has been brought to the forefront with the recent Coronavirus pandemic and corresponding school closures.  The nation wide school closures identified numerous students and their families who lacked access to personal devices and high speed internet at home (Coughlan, 2020).  Some students and families did attempt to stream online learning through mobile phone data but this method proved to be unrealistic and very costly (Coughlan, 2020).   Whilst most Educational Directorates across Australia provided their disadvantaged students with laptops and internet dongles, the process was often time consuming and bogged by red tape (Duffy, 2020).  

Students with a digital disadvantage often have a very different schooling experience than students who could be considered digitally elite.  The digitally elite are able to study from the comfort of their couch or their bedroom, in pleasant and safe surroundings (Steele, 2018).  The level of work produced by these students is higher and of better quality as they are not worrying about library opening hours, or stressed or anxious about getting home late.  Whereas students who are disadvantaged may hand in poorly conducted assignments because they were unable to research under optimal conditions (Steele, 2018).  Many teenagers are too embarrassed to be seen doing school work in the library when their friends are playing games, and some students who lack NBN, broadband internet and a desktop or laptop at home, persist in doing their assignments on their mobile phones, which leads to increased fatigue and eye strain. Many disadvantaged students would rather cite lack of interest in learning, or pretend to be apathetic than admit they do not have appropriate facilities at home and just stop trying to learn.  When you consider Maslow’s hierarchy of needs, it is clearly obvious that a student’s self actualisation is unlikely to occur if their personal safety and security is at risk (Hopper, 2020).   

Chiquo (2019) CC-BY-SA 4.0

 

Some critics would argue that personal devices such as smartphones are ubiquitous and allow anyone with a phone internet access.  Sung (2016) points out that whilst mobile phones do offer internet access, it is not conducive for conducting  research or in depth analysis of documents and as they tend to promote superficial features such as emails, social media and multimedia  (Sung, 2016).  

LoboStudioHamburg / Pixabay – Smartphones – Mostly social?

 

How to reduce the divide:  School based programs.

Education Magazine (2020) points out that the onus to reduce the divide are within the realm of federal and state government departments.  Currently, the most common method government bodies chose to address the digital gap is to supply students with a personal device such as a laptop or tablet (Jervis-Bardy, 2020).  But Steele (2018), Day (2012), and Boss (2016) all agree that bridging the divide goes beyond just supplying students with devices as simply handing each student a device does not build critical thinking and digital citizenship.  But the explicit teaching of digital literacy across all learning areas, would not only have a greater impact on bridging the gap, it would also empower students to gain further digital knowledge and understanding (Steele, 2018; Lori, 2012).  

Whilst teaching students digital literacy is an essential step, it is important to also involve their parents opportunities that build ICT competence and digital literacy (Wolohan, 2016; Hiefield, 2018).  Wolohan (2016) suggests that when schools and communities offer digital information sessions, it affords opportunities for parents who may also have low digital literacy a chance to broaden their knowledge and learning (Boss, 2016).  This then means that parents are able to assist their children with their learning at home, which improves technology integration, learning outcomes and bridges positive connections between school and home (Hiefield, 2018).  These sessions could also be used to inform families of any extra facilities and services that the school offers, such as extended library hours, homework help, as well as other local facilities such as public library and other community services (Wolohan, 2016). 

School libraries and teacher librarians are already involved with digital literacy pedagogical practices in numerous ways – as I have mentioned in this blog .  Another engaging and innovative way to boost digital literacy are digital or coding clubs.  Busteed & Sorenson (2015) suggest that lunchtime run digital clubs and programs are a fun and engaging way of teaching digital literacies and competencies at school. These clubs allow students to explore different computer programs and devices independently or in collaborative learning groups.  Lunch time clubs also open the door for many students, including digitally disadvantaged students,  a chance to explore emerging technologies that they may not normally get access to (Busteed & Sorenson, 2015).  As these clubs are predominantly social in nature, they do not have to conform to curriculum requirements, and this means students are able to explore their own interests instead of canon. Further school based options include ensuring a bank of spare devices for students who do not have access to their own, advocating for an extension of library opening hours outside school hours to allow students time to study, as well as explicitly teaching digital literacy skills as part of teaching and learning (Education Magazine, 2020). 

How to reduce the divide:  Classroom based learning.  

Teachers and educators should be encouraged to adapt their practices to reduce or minimise any unnecessary  ‘digital’ stress on their students.  Stress factors include take home assignments and feelings of overwhelm due to poor digital literacy skills.   Wolohan (2016) advises teachers to get to know their cohort and understand that whilst students may appear to be confident using their devices, it is not advisable to send large assignments home unless digital literacy and ICT facilities at home are assured.  Non submission of tasks could be due to lack of internet or even access to assistance from parents or caregivers, who may have low digital literacy skills and unable to assist their children with tasks (Wolohan, 2016). 

The other consideration classroom teachers and teacher librarians need to make is to acknowledge that each student’s ICT ability will vary and that our learning activities need to match their competencies.  This means that digital literacy needs to be differentiated the same manner as the rest of the curriculum (Wolohan, 2016).   One method is to identify students’ zone of proximal development, and create learning activities that are within that zone for optimal learning (Audley, 2018).  This method is far more efficient and beneficial than assuming capability or teaching at a fixed point.   

CONCLUSION

Steele (2018) feels like the greatest social ramification of the digital divide is that disadvantaged students will not get the same opportunities to be creative and inventive with digital technologies.  This means that the future scope of these students would be limited and possibly restricted in this new information paradigm to long term prospects of minimum wage.  Whereas students on the better half of the divide have unlimited access to information in the safety and comfort of their own home, the financial stability to access emerging technologies, increased opportunities to develop interest and skills in engaging and exploring these technologies.  Their long term prospects are far removed from their disadvantaged peers who often have to travel extensively to have the same access to technology and the internet.  This in itself is very limiting for many students and reduces their future educational and economic prospects.   As teachers and educators, we need to remember that schools are supposed to be the great equaliser, and to provide equal and equitable access to knowledge and learning.  Though in reality, we all know life and education is definitely not equal.  Government policies can often get influenced by political affiliations and can take time to come into effect.  But we as teachers have influence in our classrooms, and our actions and practice in the classroom can make a difference to improve the digital literacy of our students, improve student learning and reduce the width and depth of the digital divide. 

REFERENCES:

Audley, S. (2018). Partners as scaffolds. Teaching in the zone of proximal development. Teaching and Learning Together in Higher Education. 24. Retrieved from https://repository.brynmawr.edu/cgi/viewcontent.cgi?article=1186&context=tlthe

Boss, S. (2016). Engage parents as partners to close digital divide. Edutopia – Digital Divide [Blog]. Retrieved from https://www.edutopia.org/blog/engage-parents-partners-close-digital-divide-suzie-boss

Brown, C., & Czerniewicz, L. (2010) Debunking the digital native beyond digital apartheid, towards digital democracy. Journal of Computer Assisted Learning (26) 5. p357-369. DOI: 10.1111/j.1365-2729.2010.00369.x

Busteed, B., & Sorenson, S. (2015). Many students lack access to computer science learning. Gallup Education. Retrieved from https://www.gallup.com/education/243416/students-lack-access-computer-science-learning.aspx

Coughlan, S. (2020). Digital poverty in schools where few have laptops. BBC News – Family and Education. Retrieved from https://www.bbc.com/news/education-52399589

Day, L. (2013). Bridging the new digital divide. Edutopia – Technology Integration [Blog]. Retrieved from https://www.edutopia.org/blog/bridging-the-new-digital-divide-lori-day

Duffy, C. (2020). Coronavirus opens up Australia’s digital divide with many school students left behind. ABC News. Retrieved from https://www.abc.net.au/news/2020-05-12/coronavirus-covid19-remote-learning-students-digital-divide/12234454

Education Magazine. (2020). What is the digital divide and how is it impacting the education sector? The Education Magazine [blog]. Retrieved from https://www.theeducationmagazine.com/word-art/digital-divide-impacting-education-sector/

Frawley, J. (2017). The myth of the digital native. Teaching @ Sydney [blog]. University of Sydney. Retrieved from https://educational-innovation.sydney.edu.au/teaching@sydney/digital-native-myth/

Hiefield, M. (2018). Family tech nights can narrow the digital divide. E-School News. Retrieved from https://www.eschoolnews.com/2018/11/21/family-tech-nights-can-narrow-the-digital-divide/

Hopper, E. (2020). Maslow’s hierarchy of needs. ThoughtCo. Retrieved from https://www.thoughtco.com/maslows-hierarchy-of-needs-4582571

Kirschner, P., & De Bruyckere, P. (2017). The myths of the digital native and the multitasker. Teaching and Teacher Education 67, p.135-14

McMahon, M. (2014). Ensuring the development of digital literacy in higher education curricula. ECU Publications. Edith Cowan University. Retrieved from https://ro.ecu.edu.au/cgi/viewcontent.cgi?article=1835&context=ecuworkspost2013

Online Typing.org. (2020). Average typing speed (WPM)[blog]. Retrieved from https://onlinetyping.org/blog/average-typing-speed.php

Sung, K. (2016). What’s lost when kids are under connected to the internet? KQED – Mindshift. Retrieved from https://www.kqed.org/mindshift/43601/whats-lost-when-kids-are-under-connected-to-the-internet

Steele, C. (2018). 5 ways the digital divide effects education.  Digital Divide Council. Retrieved from http://www.digitaldividecouncil.com/digital-divide-effects-on-education/

Wolohan, S. (2016). How teachers can provide equal learning in a world of unequal access. EdSurge – Diversity and Equity. Retrieved from https://www.edsurge.com/news/2016-04-13-how-teachers-can-provide-equal-learning-in-a-world-of-unequal-access

 

Digital native or digital elite? What is the cause of the digital divide?

geralt / Pixabay – The 3rd Millennium

The third millennium has clearly delineated a strong demarcation between people who are confident using digital technologies and those that are not. 

Prensky (2001) attributed this confidence to the time frame in which people were born, and described that those that grew up with technology are designated ‘digital native’, and those who had to be introduced to technology as ‘digital immigrants’ (Prensky, 2001; Houston, 2011).  Prensky (2001) stated that the modern student is digitally savvy because of their lifetime exposure to personal devices, the internet, and therefore will be highly competent using digital technologies in their personal, social and educational domains.  He predicted that ‘digital natives’ would have increased intuitiveness and competence when using digital media, and teachers need to adapt their pedagogical practices to reflect this paradigm (Prensky, 2001; Houston, 2011). 

Unfortunately reality is very different.  Not all modern students are competent and adept with using digital technologies, and the use of the terms native and immigrant, as well as the assumption of proficiency, has led to frustration and a deep digital divide in the classroom and the greater community.  

The terms digital ‘native’ and ‘immigrant’ itself are polemical.

Brown & Czerniewicz (2010) point out that by using these titles, society is polarising itself and categorising the former is fully adept using technology and the latter, a completely maladroit luddite.  The terms can also be viewed to some people as offensive, as both the words natives and immigrants have negative connotations when considered in tandem with colonisation and immigration policies in the western world (Brown & Czerniewicz, 2011).   Instead it seems more sensible that ICT competency be based and assessed upon ability and capability rather than age (Brown & Czerniewicz, 2011).  

The most pertinent factor that these generic terms fail to acknowledge is the impact of privilege on ICT acuity. 

The recent online learning experience clearly illustrated that it is the combination of these factors that affect ICT competence, not age or birth year (Brown & Czerniewicz, 2011). 

From a personal viewpoint it appears that ICT ability and acuity is more comparable to a continuum rather than polar opposites.  Individual and collective ability will vary depending on exposure to various software programs, frequency of use, access to devices and high speed internet in the home (Houston, 2011).  It is simply ludicrous to assume familiarity with one program means virtuosity over all (Frawley, 2020).  

For example, I would call myself competent when I use Windows or android devices, but am a complete tech-tard when it comes to Apple and Mac products because I am unfamiliar with them.  I am fluent in Facebook, Instagram and Microsoft 365, but ignorant of TikTok, Snapchat and Minecraft.  I may know the intricacies of a few programs and basics of many more, I am often completely unaware of any enhanced functionalities of how these programs can be used for social or educational purposes (Kirschner & De Bruyckere, 2017, p.136).  By the same benchmark, I am comfortable with using many different forms of digital literature but would flounder if asked to create a hypertext digital narrative with embedded multimodal features.  By Prensky’s parameters I am classified as a digital native as I was born after the onset of the information revolution, but since I don’t know how to play minecraft, lack a TikTok account and still listen to the radio, my year 7 students think the dinosaurs were around at my birth (Prensky, 2001)…. See… continuum

This digital divide and inequality of access has proven to be a major issue for many families and households in Australia, as it is well known that teenagers who are not actively engaged in education, employment or training are most likely to be digitally disengaged (Helsper & Smirnova, 2019).  This is because most educational institutions offer their students unlimited internet access through onsite wifi. 

geralt / Pixabay – Schools and libraries provide equitable access to digital technologies.

 

The current Coronavirus pandemic and corresponding lock down restrictions have highlighted the disparity between that socio-economic status and residential postcodes and corresponding impact on a person’s ICT competency and educational success (DIIS, 2016; Thomas et al., 2018).  The shutdown of schools, libraries and other educational institutions have shown that people who live in lower SES communities, or in rural and remote areas, recent immigrants and refugees, as well as First Nations peoples are significantly more disadvantaged when it comes to access and ICT competency (DIIS, 2016; Thomas et al., 2018).  Reasons cited include insufficient funds to purchase personal devices and access to high speed internet, living in shared housing or remote areas, loss of employment and lack of a fixed address (DIIS, 2016; Thomas et al., 2018).  

geralt / Pixabay – Coronavirus closures.

 

Community leaders and social organisations are very concerned with further disenfranchisement arising from the Coronavirus pandemic and the corresponding closures of schools, libraries, governments and social organisations shopfronts (Alam & Imran, 2015).  This means that socially disadvantaged individuals are even further inconvenienced by their lack of ICT knowledge and access (Alam & Imran, 2015).   For young people, these closures have extended ramifications as they are conscious of their lack of access and often end up feeling marginalised and excluded, due to their inability to have an active participation in a digital society (Helsper & Smirnova, 2019). (For more information on inequalities in digital interactions click here!)

The term digital native is now considered obsolete by most reputable educational professionals (Frawley, 2017).  Brown & Czerniewicz (2010) clearly indicate that age is not an indicator of ICT acuity but rather access to devices and the internet is what defines digital adroitness.  Instead of using the terms ‘native’ and ‘immigrant’, Brown & Czerniewicz (2010) advocate the terms ‘elite’ and ‘stranger’, as it seems financial security is a greater indicator of digital acuity than age . 

Digitally elite students have unlimited out of school access to ICT through personal devices, high speed internet, and electricity, whereas digital strangers have limited access to ICT and the internet once they are no longer on their educational or professional site (Brown & Czerniewicz, 2011).  These digital strangers are often of lower socio-economic status, lack digital technology at home and rely on public services such as libraries to access the digital world (Alam & Imran, 2015; Baker, 2019).  This digital disadvantage can often be exacerbated by a lack of English as they are unable to participate in community run computer courses (Alam & Imran, 2015).  The combination of lack of access and an inability to communicate can increase social exclusion, inhibit full participation in society as well as lead to further marginalisation and division in society (Alam & Imran, 2015).  

In conclusion – the terms digital native and immigrant are no longer valid.  Digital acuity and competence is instead based upon a person’s access to digital technologies and high speed internet in their residence, which is directly correlated to financial stability and urban living.  By assuming someone’s digital ability based upon their age, teachers and educators are disadvantaging their students and reducing their learning potential.

Stay tuned for Round 2 – The Classroom Divide.

REFERENCES:

Alam, K. & Imran, S. (2015). The digital divide and social inclusion among refugee migrants; A case in regional Australia. Information Technology & People, 28(2), pp.344-365. Retrieved from https://eprints.usq.edu.au/27373/1/Alam_Imran_ITP_v28n2_AV.pdf

Baker, E. (2019). Digital access divide grows in disadvantaged communities. ABC News. Retrieved from https://www.abc.net.au/news/2019-08-12/digital-access-divide-grows-among-disadvantaged-tasmanians/11402218

Coughlan, S. (2020). Digital poverty in schools where few have laptops. BBC News – Family and Education. Retrieved from https://www.bbc.com/news/education-52399589

De Bruyckere, P. (2019). Myth busting: children are digital natives. ResearchEd News. [Blog]. Retrieved from https://researched.org.uk/myth-busting-children-are-digital-natives/

Department of Industry, Innovation and Science. (2016). Australia’s digital economy update. Retrieved from https://apo.org.au/sites/default/files/resource-files/2016/05/apo-nid66202-1210631.pdf

Duffy, C. (2020). Coronavirus opens up Australia’s digital divide with many school students left behind. ABC News. Retrieved from https://www.abc.net.au/news/2020-05-12/coronavirus-covid19-remote-learning-students-digital-divide/12234454

Education Magazine. (2020). What is the digital divide and how is it impacting the education sector? The Education Magazine [blog]. Retrieved from https://www.theeducationmagazine.com/word-art/digital-divide-impacting-education-sector/

Frawley, J. (2017). The myth of the digital native. Teaching @ Sydney [blog]. University of Sydney. Retrieved from https://educational-innovation.sydney.edu.au/teaching@sydney/digital-native-myth/

Kang, C. (2016). Bridging the digital divide that leaves schoolchildren behind. New York Times – Technology. Retrieved from  https://www.nytimes.com/2016/02/23/technology/fcc-internet-access-school.html?_r=0

Kirschner, P., & De Bruyckere, P. (2017). The myths of the digital native and the multitasker. Teaching and Teacher Education 67, p.135-142

Helsper & Smirnova. (2020). Chapter 9. Youth inequalities in digital interactions and well being. Education 21st Century Children: Emotional Wellbeing in the Digital Age. OECD iLibrary. Retrieved from https://www.oecd-ilibrary.org/sites/d0dd54a9-en/index.html?itemId=/content/component/d0dd54a9-en

Holt, S. (2018). 6 Practical strategies for teaching across the digital divide.  NEO BLOG. Retrieved from https://blog.neolms.com/6-practical-strategies-teaching-across-digital-divide/

Houston, C. (2011). Digital Books for Digital Natives. Children & Libraries: The Journal of the Association for Library Service to Children, 9(3), 39–42.

McMahon, M. (2014). Ensuring the development of digital literacy in higher education curricula. ECU Publications. Edith Cowan University. Retrieved from https://ro.ecu.edu.au/cgi/viewcontent.cgi?article=1835&context=ecuworkspost2013

Miller, H. (2017). The myth of the digital native generation. E-Learning Inside. Retrieved from https://news.elearninginside.com/myth-digital-native-generation/

Online Typing.org. (2020). Average typing speed (WPM)[blog]. Retrieved from https://onlinetyping.org/blog/average-typing-speed.php

Pontefract, D. (2017). The fallacy of digital natives. Pontefract Group [Blog]. Retrieved from https://www.danpontefract.com/the-fallacy-of-digital-natives/

Prensky, M. (2001). Digital natives, digital immigrants. Marckprensky.com. Retrieved from https://marcprensky.com/writing/Prensky%20-%20Digital%20Natives,%20Digital%20Immigrants%20-%20Part1.pdf

Steele, C. (2018). 5 ways the digital divide effects education.  Digital Divide Council. Retrieved from http://www.digitaldividecouncil.com/digital-divide-effects-on-education/

Thomas, J., Barraket, J., Wilson, C., Cook, K., Louie, Y., Holcombe-James, I., Ewing, S., and MacDonald, T. (2018). Measuring Australia’s Digital Divide: The Australian Digital Inclusion Index 2018. RMIT University, Melbourne, DOI: https://doi.org/10.25916/5b594e4475a00

Teens, trends and technology.

 

congerdesign / Pixabay

 

There is no comprehensive data on the recreational reading preferences of Australian children and teenagers across print or digital formats, but a study conducted by Deakin University and Murdoch University point out that teens have a clear preference for print in comparison to reading on devices (Cull, 2011; Dickenson, 2014; Earp, 2017).    This is surprising considering over 90% of Australian children and teenagers have access to a computer or laptop, but more than 75% never used them to access digital literature (Earp, 2017).   This information seems contradictory when you consider that recent fieldwork into public libraries showed a significant shift from traditional to more digital and computer based resources to compensate for the shift in the reading paradigm  (Wyatt, McQuire & Butt, 2015, p. 6-8).   This is because libraries are anticipating the long term presence of digital literature, and are motivated to curate their collection to hold a range of physical and digital resources, as well as a repository of technology for their clientele’s personal, social or educational use (Cull, 2011; Wyatt, McQuire & Butt, 2015, p. 8).   

O’Connell, Bales & Mitchell (2015) point out that the advent of e-books and e-readers have been the biggest game changers for school libraries in the past few decades.  E-books, especially e-textbooks have become increasingly popular in schools across the country as they are able to integrate multimodal features such as interactive maps, videos and images and enhance teaching and learning practices (O’Connell, Bales & Mitchell, 2015).  E-books also meet ACARA’s mandate to include a variety of print, digital and hybrid resources as part of the ICT and Literacy components of the General Capabilities (ACARA, 2018). 

Whilst e-books address curriculum requirements and educational needs of the modern student, O’Connell, Bales & Mitchell (2015) do acquiesce that including digital literature may be cost prohibitive to many schools and students.  Many students, especially those in lower socio-economic areas lack the financial ability to purchase a personal device to access e-books, and many schools cannot afford to purchase additional e-readers or other personal devices for all their students.  The other pertinent issue is internet access.  E-library subscriptions such as Wheelers require internet access at all times to read the book which is problematic when on public transport or out of wifi, whereas Borrowbox titles can be downloaded and then used offline, which is far more beneficial.  But both e-book repositories permit only one borrower at a time to access a title.  For class texts , this can be extremely expensive for schools to purchase multiple subscriptions for the same title.  The other pecuniary issue is that many e-books are often just ‘leased’, and as they are not owned by the school, can suddenly become unavailable and or the lending parameters change without warning.  

Whilst the cost of e-books may be prohibitive, the on-going costs of maintaining digital literature subscriptions for online encyclopaedias and databases are often cheaper than  obtaining individual journal subscriptions (Cull, 2011).  Academic libraries in particular, often purchase databases with access to a variety of journal articles for a lower cost than individual subscriptions.  Smaller libraries may coalesce to purchase a subscription together.  For example, ACT local libraries offer Gale databases as part of their collection.  

When it comes to genres, recent publishing trends show an increase in young adult literature across Australia and the world (Manuel & Carter, 2015).  These trends indicate two possible reasons, the first being that young adults are reading increasingly, and the second, is that as teenagers age into adults, they are retaining their young adult reading preferences.  Manual & Carter (2015, p.122) point out that fiction is still the most popular choice for teens, followed by multimedia, non-fiction and magazines.  Genre wise,  fantasy and mystery are popular with both sexes, and romance disdained by everyone (Manuel & Carter, 2015, p.123).  Graphic novels are making a comeback but this time in a digital space, girls seem to like detective stories, action and adventure, whereas boys like science fiction, informational texts and biographies AND EVERYONE HATES POETRY (Manuel & Carter, 2015, p.123-124; Moorefield-Lang & Gavigan, 2011))!  

What is interesting about reading preferences with teenagers is that text selection and pedagogical practices in the classroom actually has an impact on students.  When inappropriate classroom texts are selected, and or the pedagogy associated with them is poor, students develop an antithesis for that particular title/genre or reading in general (Manuel & Carter, 2015, p.125).  A perfect example would be Golding’s Lord of the Flies. I studied this text many moons ago and I only have ghastly memories of the text. 

I am an avid reader and I STILL GET THE HEEBIE JEEBIES when I think about that book.  

Whereas appropriate texts and good pedagogy can bolster a love of reading.  I studied Charlotte Bronte’s Jane Eyre ain high school and I still love her to the point where I have seven copies of Jane Eyre!!!

   

 

 

*All imageswere obtained from the public domain.

YES I HAVE 7 COPIES OF JANE EYRE!!!

 

 

Digital devices have been often touted as the panacea for improving reading rates, literacy and learning for three main reasons.  Introducing digital literature into classroom practice allows teachers to bridge the digital disconnect between a teenager’s personal life in the digital world and the school’s analogue world.  By making these valuable connections, teachers are able to lure students to tasks they may normally disdain, such as reading class texts or researching online.  Combined with the fact that most teenagers are permanently glued to their personal devices means that they are very receptive to the idea of using (their phones and) digital literature for personal and educational purposes.

 

REFERENCES:

Cull, B. W. (2011). Reading revolutions: online digital text and implications for reading in academe. First Monday, 16(6). Retrieved from http://firstmonday.org/ojs/index.php/fm/article/view/3340/2985

Dickenson, D. (2014). Children and reading: Literature review. Australia Council 2014. Retrieved from https://www.australiacouncil.gov.au/workspace/uploads/files/research/children-and-reading-literatur-5432557e418db.pdf.

Earp, J. (2017). Infographic – Teen reading habits. Teacher Magazine. Australian Council for Educational Research.  Retrieved from https://www.teachermagazine.com.au/articles/infographic-teen-reading-habits

Houston, C. (2011). Digital Books for Digital Natives. Children & Libraries: The Journal of the Association for Library Service to Children, 9(3), 39–42. EBSCO 

Manuel, J., & Carter, D. (2015). Current and historical perspectives on Australian teenager’reading practices and preferences. Australian Journal of Language and Literacy, 38(2), p.115-128. Retrieved from https://www.alea.edu.au/documents/item/1175

Moorefield-Lang, H., & Gavigan, K. (2012). These aren’t your father’s: the new world of digital graphic novels. Knowledge Quest, 40(3), 30-35. Retrieved from http://web.b.ebscohost.com.ezproxy.csu.edu.au/ehost/detail/detail?vid=0&sid=b349502e-3dd2-48d3-9d9a-6beed7db31cc%40pdc-v-sessmgr05&bdata=JnNpdGU9ZWhvc3QtbGl2ZQ%3d%3d#AN=82563984&db=lih

O’Connell, J., Bales, J., & Mitchell, P. (2015). Literature in digital environments: Changes and emerging trends in Australian school libraries. In L. Das, S. Brand-Gruwel, K. Kok, & J. Walhout (Eds.), IASL 2015 Conference Proceedings: The School Library Rocks: Living it, Learning it, Loving it (pp. 356-369). International Association of School Librarianship. http://www.meles.nl/_clientfiles/SMD/IASL2015_Proceedings_Vol2_2ndEd_ResearchPapers.pdf

Teen Reading In a Digital Era. (2017). Report at a glance – Teen Reading in a digital era. Murdoch University & Deakin University.  Retrieved from https://teenreadingdotnet.files.wordpress.com/2017/04/teen-reading-folio-report_email.pdf

Wyatt, D., McQuire, S., & Butt, D. (2015). Public libraries in a digital culture.  University of Melbourne & State Library of QLD. University of Melbourne Press. Melbourne Victoria. Retrieved from https://arts.unimelb.edu.au/__data/assets/pdf_file/0005/1867865/PublicLibrariesinaDigitalCulture.pdf

Task 1 – INF533 – Reading, literacy and digital literature in the classroom.

xxolaxx / Pixabay – Reading in a digital landscape.

 

The advent of technology, and plethora of personal devices has revolutionised the reading paradigm to the point where, texts are no longer restricted to print, but are now available through multiple formats and platforms.  Digital literature utilises a continuum of technology to convey meaning, and the level of computation varies from a scanned book, to the interactive hypertext narratives with multimodal features  with a host of genres and hybrid genres such as e-stories, linear e-narratives, interactive stories, hypertext narratives and electronic games narratives. in the middle (Walsh, 2013; Maneti, Lipscombe & Kervin, 2018; Rettberg, 2012).  These new formats as Lamb (2011), and Sadokiesiski (2013) point out, require additional literacies to engage, process, evaluate and communicate. 

This is because reading has evolved from text decoding, to constructing meaning from symbols (Lamb, 2011) . 

ACARA’s (2018)  response has been to define literacy as the ability to interact with, engage and communicate across modalities for personal, social, economic and recreational purposes. 

This definition clearly indicates that teaching practice needs to include a variety of texts, in print, digital and hybrid formats (Leu, Forzani, Timbrell, & Maykel, 2015).  But whilst there are strong arguments and mandates to include digital texts, there are are complications.  

Many students struggle with digital text comprehension, as the simultaneous synthesising of visual, audio and text information causes information overload (Jeon, 2012; Mangen, Walgermo & Bronnick., 2013).   Students with poor fundamental literacy are at further disadvantage, as they are easily distracted away from the content by the multimodal elements, as well as being unable to locate information due poor visual ergonomics (Lamb, 2011; Leu, McVerry, OByrne, Kili, Zawilinski, Everett-Cacopardo,Kennedy, Forzani, 2011;  Jeon, 2012; Hashim & VongKulluksn, 2018; Mangen et al., 2013, p.66). 

geralt / Pixabay – Feeling overwhelmed???

 

I have noticed that here is a strong disinclination for teachers to include the creation of hypertext narratives and games in their practice (Mantei, Lipscombe & Kervin, 2018).  This hesitancy could be attributed to the premise that it requires both the student and the teacher to be competent in the additional literacies  (Leu et al., 2015).  Whilst many students could be considered digital natives and may possess the necessary skill set to create such hypertext, many teachers would be considered digital immigrants and therefore lack the confidence to implement such technologies in their classroom.  Unfortunately by excluding creation of digital texts, students are disadvantaged by the lack of potential extension and consolidation of learning. 

Armstong (2020) Bloom’s Taxonomy. CC – BY – NC

Remember Bloom – By failing to include a creative element – students are being denied opportunities for higher order thinking.  

In an effort to address some of these concerns, our library team has a balanced collection of print and digital literature, as well as have recently implemented an information literacy scope and sequence  (Leu et al., 2015).  Our students have access to a robust physical collection, e-books and audiobooks through a BorrowBox subscription, as well as online databases such as InfoBase, Gale, Britannica, EBSCO, Trove, and World Book.  

Anecdotally from my position as a teacher librarian, I can see the students vastly prefer print for recreational reading, but have a strong preference for digital resources for informational purposes.  I regularly see many teachers include digital texts into their teaching practice through reading and viewing of e-books, online databases and web based texts.  Through our information literacy program, we are endeavouring to teach digital literacy skills, such as, how to locate, evaluate and synthesise information, as well as problem solving in both online and offline scenarios (Leu et al., 2015, p. 140).  

Digital literature has transformed society, the definition of literacy and the landscape of pedagogical practice.  Time will only tell if our scope and sequence improve digital literacies and competencies in both the faculty and the students… stay tuned for further updates

 

 

References 

Armstrong, P. (2020). Bloom’s Taxonomy. Center for Teaching, Vanderbilt University. Retrieved from https://cft.vanderbilt.edu/guides-sub-pages/blooms-taxonomy/. Image licenced under CC – BY – NC 

Australian Curriculum, Assessment and Reporting Authority. (2018). Literacy. In Australian Curriculum – General Capabilities. Retrieved from https://www.australiancurriculum.edu.au/f-10-curriculum/general-capabilities/literacy/

Hashim, A & VongKulluskn, V. (2018). E reader apps and reading engagement: A descriptive case study. Computers and Education, 125, pp.358-375. Retrieved from https://www.journals.elsevier.com/computers-and-education/

Jabr, F. (2013). The reading brain in the digital age: The science of paper versus screens. Scientific American. Retrieved from https://www.scientificamerican.com/article/reading-paper-screens/

Jeon, H. (2012). A comparison of the influence of electronic books and paper books on reading comprehension, eye fatigue, and perception. The Electronic Library, 30(3), 390-408. doi: 10.1108/02640471211241663 

Lamb, A. (2011). Reading redefined for a transmedia universe. Learning and leading with technology, 39(3), 12-17. Retrieved from http://ezproxy.csu.edu.au/login?url=http://search.ebscohost.com/ login.aspx?direct=true&db=ehh&AN=67371172&site=ehost-live

Leu, D., McVerry, J. G., O’Byrne, W. I., Kiili, C., Zawilinski, L., Everett-Cacopardo, H., Kennedy, C., & Forzani, E. (2011). The new literacies of online reading comprehension: Expanding the literacy and learning curriculum. Journal of Adolescent & Adult Literacy, 55(1)5-14. Doi: 10.1598/JAAL.55.1.1

Leu, D.J, Forzani, E.,Timbrell, N., & Maykel., C. (2015) . Seeing the forest, not the trees: Essential technologies for literacy in primary grade and upper elementarty grade classroom. Reading Teacher 69: (2), p.139-145. Retrieved from https://eric.ed.gov/?id=EJ1073399

Mangen, A., Walgermo, B. R. & Bronnick, K.A. (2013). Reading linear texts on paper versus computer screen: Effects on reading comprehension. International Journal of Educational Research, 58, 61-68.doi:10.1016/j.ijer.2012.12.002 

Mantei, J., Kipscombe, K., & Kervin, L. (2018). Literature in a digital environment (Ch. 13). In L. McDonald (Ed.), A literature companion for teachers. Marrickville, NSW: Primary English Teaching Association Australia (PETAA).

Rettberg, J.W. (2012). Electronic literature seen from a distance: the beginnings of a field. Retrieved from http://www.dichtung-digital.org/2012/41/walker-rettberg.htm

Sadokierski, Z. (2013, November 12). What is a book in the digital age? [Web log post]. Retrieved from http://theconversation.com/what-is-a-book-in-the-digital-age-19071

Sargeant, B. (2015). What is an ebook? what is a book app? And why should we care? An analysis of contemporary picture books. Children’s Literature in education, 46, p.454-466. doi: 10.1007/s10583-015-9243

Walsh, M. (2013). Literature in a digital environment (Ch. 13). In L. McDonald (Ed.), A literature companion for teachers. Marrickville, NSW: Primary English Teaching Association Australia (PETAA).