Beliefs for Integrating Technology into the English Language Arts Classroom While access to technology and the internet has the potential to lessen .. and personal relationship to issues of gender, race, socioeconomic. In order to cultivate the kind of technology literacy in our students called for by Peer reviewed. Direct link. ERIC Number: EJ Record Type: Journal Teaching the English Language Arts with Technology: A Critical Approach and. A middle school language arts educator shares his favorite digital tools for technology to help facilitate learning: How do you work technology into the how to correct them, as well as a link to a YouTube video about them.
Further, some principles of consumption and production transfer across different types of texts, like the idea that an author or a filmmaker, or a website designer intentionally composed their text using specific techniques. However, some things do change. For example, students can collaborate virtually on their reading e. Educators should be always aware of the above dynamics and plan instruction accordingly.
Understanding that there are dynamic literacy practices at work in the consumption and production of texts, we believe 1.
K—12 English teachers, with their students, should teach students the principles of design and composition, as well as theories connected to issues of power and representation in visual imagery, music, and sound. English teacher educators, with preservice and inservice teachers, should harness online platforms for collaborative writing to invite teacher candidates to examine the composing practices of students and create peer feedback partnerships.
English and literacy researchers should examine the affordances and constraints of multimodal composition, points of tension with traditional academic literacies, and the role that teachers of writing play in assessment and evaluation of multimodal compositions. Some Related Scholarship Alpers, M. Journal of Media Literacy Education, 5 2— Digital technologies in the middle grades. The rise of writing: Re educating the senses to multicultural communities: Prospective teachers using digital media and sonic cartography to listen for culture.
Multicultural Education Review, 9 3— A multimodal perspective on comics reading. Embracing the messiness of research: Documentary video composition as embodied, critical media literacy. English Journal, 356— Teaching in the connected learning classroom. Digital Media and Learning Research Hub. Composing texts across media and genres. Digital and media literacy: Connecting culture and classroom. An agenda for research and design.
Adolescents and digital literacies: Learning alongside our students. Developing a social media pedagogy for teacher education. Using digital scrapbooks to celebrate cultural capital. International Journal of Designs for Learning, 7 388— A case for authentic writing opportunities. English Journal, 622— Remix as professional learning: Educational Sciences, 6 Hands-on PD with digital writing. English Journal, 369— The impulse to compose and the age of composition.
Research in the Teaching of English, 43 3— Applying the flipped classroom model to English language arts education. It is common to hear digital technologies discussed in positive, progressive, and expansive terms; those who speak with enthusiasm may be doing so without an awareness that technology can also deepen societal inequities.
Students who have access to technology at home, for example, might appear to understand a subject presented with a digital device faster than those who do not have access to similar devices outside of school.
K—12 English teachers, with their students, should promote and demonstrate critical thinking through discussion and identification of the rhetoric of written and digital materials e. English teacher educators, with preservice and inservice teachers, should demonstrate how inequality affects access to technology throughout communities e. English and literacy researchers should design research studies that problematize popular assumptions about the nature of societal inequity, as well as issues of power and authority in knowledge production.
Some Related Scholarship Drucker, M. Crossing the digital divide: How race, class, and culture matter. Contemporary Issues in Technology and Teacher Education, 6 143— A rationale for creating shifts in policy, infrastructure, and instruction. Reimagining teaching, teacher education, and research pp.
Teacher Librarian, 44 412— Critical engagement through digital media production: A nexus of practice. Teachers College Record, 6— Critical literacy and urban youth: Pedagogies of access, dissent, and liberation. Civic engagement, information poverty, and the Internet worldwide. Learning and teaching technology in English teacher education: Findings from a national study. English Education, 48 4— Implications for teacher education.
The European Journal of Humour Research, 3 49— An imitation of life: Deconstructing racial stereotypes in popular culture. A pedagogy of representation 1st ed.
University of Tennessee Press.
Tracing academic literacies across contemporary literacy sponsorscapes: Mobilities, ideologies, identities, and technologies.
London Review of Education, 15 1— Technology and social inclusion: Rethinking the digital divide. Summary In offering these four belief statements and numerous examples, the scholars and educators involved in writing this document recognize that we, too, are both informed — and limited — by our own experiences, assumptions, and daily literacy practices.
Ask the important questions. After implementing the strategies, teachers should try integrating the technology and reflect upon the experience as a way of revisiting and revising the strategies regularly. A detailed description of each strategy follows. In other words, the power of the pedagogy must drive the technology being implemented, so that instruction, skills, content, or literacy is enhanced in some meaningful way.
Otherwise, the technology itself often becomes the content focus rather than the English language arts. Teachers must avoid the temptation to use technologies without understanding the pedagogical implications of using them. Thus the pedagogical goals take precedence; the technologies are thought of as another means of reaching those goals. A pedagogical framework for developing a critical approach to technology applications.
Incorporating Technology into the Modern English Language Arts Classroom
We believe that this is an important distinction; when technology is not tied to an authentic context and purpose, it will likely become a burden for users. Therefore, when we bring technologies into our English language arts classrooms, we should do so with forethought—we should do so critically, with an explicit understanding of why we want to do it and how it will affect students, instruction, and curricular goals.
Figure 1 represents our pedagogical framework for the decision-making process resulting in an informed and effective integration of technology applications into the classroom.
This framework can guide teachers in planning their use of technologies. We developed the framework by defining the issues we consider when we bring technologies into the classroom, by observing other teachers who use technologies, and by engaging others in discussions about problems and challenges they faced when they or their colleagues brought technologies into their existing English language arts contexts.
This understanding includes their conception of English, knowledge of their goals as teachers without the presence of those technologies, an understanding of the social and pedagogical context in which they taught, knowledge of the available technologies, how to interact with them as users and teachers, and an awareness of other issues that affect the teaching in that context. In short, the decisions that good teachers make every day when considering what to do, how to act, and how to run a successful English language arts classroom are made explicit.
This framework is important in two ways. For experienced teachers, those who successfully integrate technologies in their classes and have done so previously, this framework can give form to their thinking processes and help them make future decisions regarding technologies, as well as help justify those decisions to others.
For other teachers, those less experienced with technologies, this framework can guide decision-making processes and serve as a professional development tool.
Making these issues visible can also help classroom teachers resist pressure to implement uncritical applications of new technologies and allow them to negotiate for the appropriate time, support, training, and resources they need.
Asking the Important Questions When we begin to think about using technologies in our English classes, it is important to consider our overall goals. As a part of this process, it is important to develop and entertain key questions to decide how, when, and whether to change an activity, lesson, or unit by incorporating technology. According to Richardsa veteran high school English teacher, two affirmative answers to the following questions indicate that a teacher should make the change to implement technology: Will this use of technology enhance the conversation of the classroom?
Will it validate the work of the classroom? Will it validate the individual? Is it worth the time and effort? Drawing on our own experiences and of those from the teachers with whom we work, we also suggest the following questions as a means of inspiring a more critical consideration for those teachers of the English language arts and English educators entertaining the thought of integrating technology: Why do I want to use technologies?
Is the purpose authentic? Do I have an instructional need that is not being currently met that technology might help with? If not, is there an instructional strategy or learning activity that I want to implement that technology might enhance or assist? What are my goals and objectives as a teacher for my students? How can the technologies enhance my ability to reach these goals and objectives?
What are my students capable of doing and handling with regard to technology? What are their limitations? What am I capable of doing? What are my limitations? How can we teach each other, grow together? What technology resources are available for me and for students, and how can they be used? How might issues of access and equity affect our experience?
If resources are minimal, how can I maximize them? How can I adapt to limited access to technology tools and resources? Are these consistent with my goals and objectives? What are the curriculum standards, local, state, and national, which address technology in the English language arts?
How might I fold these into a purposeful use of technology in my classroom?
13 Reasons for Using Technology in the Classroom
What other issues do I need to consider? What other resources can I draw upon for insights? Rather than rely on quantifying the decision to use technology, we suggest teachers use their answers to these questions as a strategy to be proactive in preparing to teach with technology and as a way to flesh out an informed plan for doing it effectively. While Richards point is valid, the reality is that technology is here, more pervasive than ever and proliferating at a furious pace.
This fact raises another important consideration in terms of context—our students. Students are often the first to possess new technologies—if not the tools themselves, then the knowledge and skill involved to use them in strategic ways.
They often bring a sense of technological know-how and literacy, which most teachers are not aware of and do not know how to draw upon for instructional purposes. While the levels of development may vary among students, they are on average more savvy and more accustomed to life with technology than their teachers.
Berger explored the effects of storytelling in the transition from print to electronic media, part of which involves a sense of agency in the interactive narratives of computer and video games that could potentially inspire children to read more. Working Guidelines for Using Technology Effectively In addition to asking key questions, the development of guidelines for using technology effectively is also an important consideration.
The first author surveyed students in methods courses over a two-year period to collect perceptions while the second author gathered ideas from teachers during a recent Third Coast Writing Project seminar he facilitated. Although the list provides important guideposts, it is important for individual teachers to consider this list as a bridge to creating their own guiding principles of technology use based upon their own unique classroom goals, contexts, and students.
Thus, this list is intended as a starting point for teachers to consider their goals and to then work towards asking the difficult questions that lead to effective teaching with technology.
Supplement and enhance instruction and, in effect, work almost transparently and seamlessly with content instruction. Provide additional resources and create wider access to them. Expand and enhance the definitions and dimensions of literacy critical, digital, media and otherwise. Facilitate an open forum for discussion that allows for more opportunities for free and democratic participation and dialogue.
Replace teachers or pedagogy. Complicate or supercede content instruction or become the content focus of instruction itself. Limit appropriate resources or access to them. Disrupt or complicate normal classroom community efforts and objectives for addressing audience.
Deepen social, racial, gender, and economic inequalities. Stifle creativity or opportunities for using the imagination or multiple intelligences. Critical Uses of Technology Applications in the English Classroom The following list provides a few examples of teachers who, in our minds, have developed a critical mindset and used an informed approach when making the decision to use technology to teach the English language arts.
They are by no means intended to be exhaustive; instead, they are meant to be indicative of the kind of thoughtful, informed, and critical approach that can yield potentially better results for both teacher and students. Case 1 In the fall ofAllyson Young, a high school English teacher in Charlottesville, Virginia was having difficulty teaching writing with two of her applied level ninth-grade English classes.
In addition to her students struggling with fluency and poor writing skills, they posed behavior problems for each other.
A veteran teacher of city schools, Young rarely had problems with classroom management. Even in this situation, the issue was not that her students acted out toward her but with one another. They simply could not get along without verbal and sometimes physical altercations, making group work, especially writing workshop and conferencing nearly impossible. As a result, she began to look for a way to address this problem beyond simple classroom management techniques and considered technology applications.
Through a partnership with the English Education program at the University of Virginia, Young began to use an online portfolio tool with the students in this particular class to facilitate the teaching of writing and enhance the writing process and writing workshop.
In effect, students could compose, share, provide feedback, revise and edit online spread out in the same computer lab without having to sit in groups in close proximity to one another. In addition to completing descriptive writing assignments, they also composed pieces in conjunction with their study of Romeo and Juliet. Young described the effects as such: The focus was now on the writing rather than cutting each other down.
My students began to consistently get writing down on paper and complete drafts.
Beliefs for Integrating Technology into the English Language Arts Classroom - NCTE
Fluency was a major problem, but their fluency improved over time with the online feedback they were receiving from their peers. Their drafts not only became longer, but they improved in terms of content and quality too.
Gray began to envision computers providing a means for students to illustrate and animate the stories and legends of their ancestors, which they had collected from tribal elders. Not only have students used the computers to write, illustrate, animate, and publish, but they have also created an archive of cultural artifacts, published an anthology of student work each semester, performed dramas interpreting Lakota legends, composed and sampled electronic music, and filmed and edited digital videos.
Gray and his fellow teachers then applied technology to other core subjects, and his colleagues have continued the initiative Gooden, Case 3 For nearly 20 years, Margo Figgins has included a major research project as a requirement in her Language, Literacy, and Culture methods course in the English Education program at the University of Virginia. The project originated as a pen-and-paper and then word-processed product.
However, the limitations of such tools soon led to redundancy. In addition, only so much time in class could be devoted to student sharing of research. Consequently, Figgins began to consider ways in which technology might address these pedagogical limitations—how to make previous research available to students who could then build upon existing research information and data and how to allow students to communicate and share their process, progress, and research with others in the course as well as with teachers, future students, and the public.
Solving these pedagogical problems became the catalyst for considering technology applications and led to her use of the Q-folio, an online electronic portfolio which, in effect, simulated the interactive research community she desired.Effective Teaching with Technology: Grade 3, English Language Arts
Through the use of the tool, students have been able to access and reflect critically upon previous research projects, expand upon them, and ultimately make their own distinct contribution to the course archive. Case 4 At Penn State University, Jamie Myers encourages traditional uses of technology, like word processing and web research, but he also prepares preservice English teachers to integrate hypermedia authoring of web sites as content-based strategies to teach critical literacy, literary analysis, and language and communications skills.
Through the process of creating hypermedia projects, preservice teachers engage in the analysis and critique of the possible identities, relationships, and values represented by the texts and their possible multiple readings.
This constructivist approach generates the critical literacy activity with texts that is a central content goal of the English language arts curriculum. In effect, students create relevance by finding many ways to connect and manipulate their rich multimedia lives outside of school within the classroom, and in turn, they gradually begin to discover how the ideas expressed in course readings permeate all the texts of the world. Using commercially available software such as StorySpace, Adobe Premiere, Photoshop, SoundEdit 16, iMovie, and various web authoring products to create English methods classroom projects, Myers has been integrating hypermedia authoring for critical literacy since Most of the projects originated in conjunction with the reading of literature, a central component of the secondary English classroom, which has helped to facilitate the successful transfer of critical hypermedia authoring to the students and their cooperating mentor teachers in the field experiences Myers has supervised.
Some projects originated in the analysis of media texts and their role in the construction of cultural identities and values. For example, one project requires small groups of students to identify significant themes in a work of literature and then explore how multiple perspectives on those themes through multimedia texts inspire and motivate students.
In effect, the students create websites that forge connections between novels using a thematic approach to raise questions about cultural ideals and beliefs.
Another project involves the analysis of one literary piece by the entire class as a means of expanding the traditional literature instructional approach of focusing on a single interpretation, one in which the teacher becomes the single arbitrator of correct meaning. While authors certainly have intentions, meaning is a constructed event that draws from the prior experience, knowledge, and social lives of the readers.
These whole class hypermedia websites involve students organizing and juxtaposing texts from their experiences to bear on a central piece of literature. This activity builds the intertextual context, or cultural schemas, and provides the necessary bridge required to debate potential meanings within the focal text of study.
New computer digital technologies provide the teacher and student with tools for experiencing these connections in ways not previously available.
- Teaching the English Language Arts With Technology: A Critical Approach and Pedagogical Framework
- 13 Reasons for Using Technology in the Classroom
- Position Statements
Projects like these help generate relevance for traditional school readings in everyday life experience. In addition to these projects and others involving asynchronous communication about literary texts and analysis of popular culture media, Myers has also initiated the creation of electronic portfolios for English education students as a multiyear, constructive process of authoring a hypermedia website that allows them to explore their developing stances on educational issues and curricular ideas for English instruction.
We have introduced the idea of speaking against images as well as about images using words and music and images in juxtaposition…. Myers, Personal Communication, March For other examples, see the list of additional resources at the end of this article. Conclusion Despite the challenges that effective technology integration poses for educators, there is hope in the powerful suggestions provided by preservice teachers and those teachers who continue their professional development through opportunities like the National Writing Project and its regional and state sites across the country.
As Pope and Golub asserted, it is also important for English educators to model effective practices of teaching with technology. KeiferYoungand Young and Figgins emphasized the potential technology holds for teacher empowerment and school reform when addressed as a part of teacher education.
Although technology alone may not be the saving grace of education, there are important ways in which we can use it to support and enhance our teaching practices in the English language arts classroom—the key to which is developing a critical perspective that informs our pedagogical approach. Kajder characterized this informed perspective as one of making a critical choice: We choose the texts we want our students to enjoy and explore.
We choose the challenges and exercises we want them to experience as writers. Now we need to choose the most efficient tools for our students as learners…. The computer is simply another tool, only to be chosen when it is appropriate. With an informed pedagogical framework in mind, English teachers and English educators can begin to bring focus to this vision by asking the hard questions that lead to the development of guidelines, which in turn, allow us to make the best choices for effective technology applications and create beneficial learning experiences for our students.
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The making of meaning: Metaphors, models, and maxims for writing teachers. Fair dinkum teaching and learning: Reflections on literacy and power. The art of teaching writing: The beneficial effects of experience on attitudes. Journal of Educational Computing Research, 2, The classroom use of technology since Education Week, 18 4368,