Trading a Tweet for Your GPA: Nelly Elzayat on Using Digital Literacy to Enhance Adolescent Literacy
Today, we pass the digital pen over to our Literacy Research and Education Outreach Resident, Nelly Elzayat. Currently based in Cambridge, MA and a student at the Harvard Graduate School of Education, Nelly is studying and working extensively in the realm of international education. In today’s post, Nelly shares with us her latest research on digital literacy and it’s integration into curricula both domestically and globally. You may read her report in it’s entirety by checking out Using Digital Literacy to Enhance Adolescent Literacy.
Today’s adolescent reader is engaged with digital texts that range from electronic books to websites to mobile phone texting (Larson, 2009), yet our middle school and high school classrooms do not reflect this component of adolescent life. Textbooks continue to be predominantly in print, and the main mode of communication between the teacher and the student is face-to-face interaction that occurs mostly in the classroom. Nevertheless, some educators have managed to capitalize on the predominant technological aspect of adolescents’ lives to raise student motivation levels, and in turn enhance their literacy skills.
Sheelah Sweeny (2010) describes a US literature teacher who sent her class an assignment to summarize a Shakespearian passage through a mobile text message, and required the class to respond in the same way. Another teacher required his students to post a minimum number of tweets each week. The result was a strong sense of community among members of the class. (more…)