Some (Further) Academic Context

Now that your projects have matured a little further, it is constructive to read and think a little more in depth about the relationship between your practice and academic theory relating to pedagogy. Here I have highlighted three themes which seem significant in your projects:

Literacy & Learning Outside the Classroom

‘Eloise’s news January 28th

Our babby brother jams Michel

was born on crismas day

and i wrote about it in my news

but all my teacher did

was put in capitals and full stops

and corect my spelling.’

(Sedwick, 2012, p9)

Many of you are interested in the obvious literacy aspect afforded by the setting, as well as the opportunity for children to be immersed in a learning environment outside of the classroom. In difference to the excerpt above, being outside of the classroom, or more traditional educational institutions with their rules and practices, can afford learners and teachers the space to do something different; to value something different. There are many texts and articles written on this subject, and some of the following may help you to consider this element of your project with more depth:

  • Sedgwick, F. 2012, Learning outside the primary classroom, Routledge, London- available in e-book format from the library
  • Waite, S. 2011, Children learning outside the classroom: from birth to eleven, SAGE, Thousand Oaks, CA;London;.
  • Qualters, D.M. 2010, Experiential education: making the most of learning outside the classroom, Jossey-Bass, San Francisco, Calif.
  • Sobel, David. 2013  Place-Based Education: Connecting Classrooms and Communities.
    2nd ed. Orion Nature Literacy Series. Orion, Great Barrington,
  • Tzibazi, V. 2014, “Primary schoolchildren’s experiences of participatory theatre in a heritage site”, Education 3-13, vol. 42, no. 5, pp. 498-516.

Games in Education – Games-Based Learning/Play-Based Learning

For a number of you, you are introducing a game/play element to your project. For example, treasure hunts and quizzes. Whilst this is evidently an area in which you were immediately interested, and intuitively felt linked to an effective educational experience it is good to delve into this a pedagogical area with a bit more depth. Games and play in learning can be very effective, but they can also be superficial and ineffective. Here are some readings and a video case study to support your understanding of this area:

  • Fevre, D. (2012) Best New Games
  • Gee, J.P.  (2014) What Video Games Have to Teach Us About Learning and Literacy by James Paul Gee
  • McGonigal, J. (2011) Reality is Broken: Why Games Make Us Better and How They Can Change The World
  • Salen, K. and Zimmerman, E. (2003) Rules of Play: Game Design Fundamentals
  • Whitton, N. and Moseley, A (2012) Using games to enhance learning and teaching: a beginners guide

Critical Pedagogy

A number of you are considering aspects of gender, socio-economic status and ethnicity in relation to literary education. In thinking about these aspects you are linking in with the theoretical area of critical pedagogy, which seeks to disrupt discriminate domination and homogeneity in education. For example, by creating education which opposes the oppression of women in society. Some of the following academic articles may help you to deepen your understanding and practice in this area:

  • Ghose, M. 2002, “Literacy, Power and Feminism”, Economic and Political Weekly, vol. 37, no. 17, pp. 1615-1620.
  • Mace, J. 1983, “Women Talking: Feminism and Adult Literacy Work”, Frontiers: A Journal of Women Studies, vol. 7, no. 1, pp. 38-43.
  • Freire, P. 1996, Pedagogy of the oppressed, New rev. edn, Penguin, London.
  • Flynn, J. 2012, “Critical Pedagogy with the Oppressed and the Oppressors: Middle School Students Discuss Racism and White Privilege”, Middle Grades Research Journal, vol. 7, no. 2, pp. 95.
  • Makin, L. & Jones-Diaz, C. 2002, Literacies in early childhood: changing views, challenging practice, MacLennan & Petty, London;Sydney;.
  • Rie, S., Steensel, R.C.M. & Gelderen, A.J.S. 2017, “Implementation quality of family literacy programmes: a review of literature”, Review of Education, vol. 5, no. 1, pp. 91-118.
  • Anderson, J., Anderson, A. & Sadiq, A. 2017;2016;, “Family literacy programmes and young children’s language and literacy development: paying attention to families’ home language”, Early Child Development and Care, vol. 187, no. 3-4, pp. 644-654.
  • Hill, S. & Diamond, A. 2013, “Family literacy in response to local contexts”, Australian Journal of Language and Literacy, The, vol. 36, no. 1, pp. 48-55.

Task: Integrating Reading

Produce at least one blog post which responds to something from the texts shared above. Refer to the previous blog post for guidance on the way you should approach your reading – and remember; we’re not interested in what the paper says, we’re interested in the way you put it to work (how does it help you think about the things you’re doing in your project)


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