Welcome to the second installment of Teaching Tip Tuesdays for the 2010 – 2011 school year.
So far there are 70 tips that I hope you will find useful in the archives here. I will be adding a new tip every Tuesday.
Without further ado, here is today’s tip.
In order to live and prosper in today’s society, it is important to be able to interpret and understand a wide variety of messages that continue to be presented to us in new and unfamiliar ways. As such, we cannot continue to focus on narrow definitions of literacy. The goal should be to empower our students to become good consumers of information.
I teach Grade 3 and involve my students in creating new media whenever I can. Every year, I work with small groups and guide the students into creating a radio play. I have the students come up with a story idea and each of them must also create heir own character for the play. We then write the play, rehearse it, and record it on the computer. The finished product is a podcasted radio show. I give each student a CD with all of the plays on it and if I can, I even get the segments aired on the local radio station. The students are engaged in this process in a way that a regular reader’s theatre script simple cannot do.
That is why we can no longer teach from textbooks or readers alone. We need to expose our students to Internet content, to film, radio, television, and the things that have now become part of our daily lives. This will empower our students and allow them to be literate in all of the ways we communicate in this current day and age.