New Media Literacies.

As noted by the New London Group, the basic mission of education is to “ensure that all students benefit from learning in ways that allow them to participate fully in public, community, creative and economic life”– As we head into the twenty-first century, the ever-shifting landscapes of technology seem rather inevitable and it is because of this progression that Henry Jenkins emphasizes the utter importance of new media literacies among today’s youth. In the reading, Jenkins defines these new frameworks for literacy as “a set of cultural competencies and social skills that young people need in the new media landscape” and propels his advocacy by presenting certain “skills” he feels are critical for present-day culture– Play, Performance, Simulation, Appropriation, Multitasking, Distributed Cognition, Collective Intelligence, Judgement, Transmedia Navigation, Networking, & Negotiation.

Having grown up within the era that brought the digital world to its current shiny throne, the readings provided a nostalgic reminder of the skills I was initially taught– Of course, traditional literacies, critical analysis & research skills were learned in the classroom, but it really wasn’t until the fourth or fifth grade that we even started experimenting with desktop computers. It’s interesting to see the progress that our educational system has slowly began to make and all the changes that seem to already be occurring within schools– I hear about the multiple iPads & laptops in mere second-grade classrooms or how a friend’s 3 year-old niece is much more proficient with an iPhone than she even is. And although it is a bit shameful to be ironically less tech savvy than a toddler, I feel that the educational system has succeeded in taking on the challenges that this new world has provided, and when paired with Jenkins’ lens of “participatory culture,” an exploration of entirely new media literacies seem all the more possible.

3 Comments on “New Media Literacies.

  1. I agree with the claim of technology progressing in schools. I can completely relate to these young kids now who are more familiar with technology than me. So don’t feel ashamed, I am sure their are more people like us.

  2. It’s funny that fourth or fifth grade may be considered getting a late start on the technological world. I didn’t officially learn anything about how to operate a computer until I was a freshman in high school taking keyboard class. I’m glad that children in school today are able to learn the in’s and out’s of the digital realm but it also concerns me that it is replacing the old fashion foundation of learning. For example, it may only be a rumor but I have heard that many school’s have stopped teaching cursive writing in their curriculum. So now elementary school kids will be able to type 50 words a minute but not know how to write the alphabet using cursive letters…. it’s a funny world we’re living in.

  3. I completely agree with your statement that the educational system has done a great job in in taking on the challenges of the new digital world. I think back to my own days in elementary and middle school when most classrooms had one or two PCs and any technology beyond an overhead projector was sparsely utilized. It’s amazing to think that toddlers are now growing up with touchscreens, but it gives them a serious advantage in this media-driven world of ours.

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