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Inquiry Project

Here is a link to the Prezi for my Inquiry Project.

http://prezi.com/v8hlg2voxz6a/multicultural-education/

vvaria's picture

Inquiry Project

Here is a link to the Prezi for my Inquiry Project.

http://prezi.com/v8hlg2voxz6a/multicultural-education/

vvaria's picture

Group Presentation

Oops! In all the pre-trip excitement/chaos I forgot to post my blog this week! I hope this reaches you all in a not TOO delayed fashion. 

 

This week, I am going to blog about my group presentation on language diversity. Riley and I both worked on the portion of the presentation that connected the theme of language diversity, specifically in Ghana, to the theoretical frameworks we had opened in class at the beginning of the semester.  Undergoing this process was highly valuable for a few reasons.  For one, it gave us a way to reflect back on the texts we had read and the theories we had come to understand as valuable contributions to the discipline.  Also, we were able to observe tangible situations for the theories and seem them more practically applied.  Theoretical frameworks always have the ability to expand our knowledge base and encourage a deeper level of thought, and this was a very valuable experience, for the presentation, and for ourselves as well. Now looking at it and our presentation as a whole, the theory we had uncovered as pertinent to the discourse only began to brush upon the frameworks we could have opened up.  Language acquisition theories would have also been a very interesting segment of theory to open up for discussion, and could have added to the overall message and value of our presentation. 

 

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Defining Literacy

I want to use this blog to reflect on some of the thoughts I have had about defining literacy.  In class we worked in groups or pairs and expanded our idea of literacy.  My group came up with the following as our working definition of literacy: the ability to manipulate secondary discourses in order to give you agency.  Each of these words carries a lot of weight and purpose for me and to the overall definition.  I particularly like the idea of “manipulation” here because I think language can be, and often is, manipulative.  Being literate can mean different things in different contexts.  This idea was also something I have been thinking about and elaborating on in the last few weeks. We typically understand being literate as simply reading and writing and associate it with books and alphabet letters, but with this definition, the more elaborate interdisciplinary nature of literacy is acknowledged. Being literate in math or in science, or being literate in facebook or twitter, are now all accepted statements, and logical under this definition of literacy. On the twitter, the idea of being literate in music was brought up.  This to me, was particularly interesting because it broached the idea that being literate is not only about seeing something on a page and understanding it, but also about feeling and transmitting feeling.  Does this definition account for that? I wonder what the boundaries of this definition are. Is this definition sufficient? Or are we still treading around it?

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Tweeting and Identity

In looking at the tweets and conversations this week, I have made a few observations.  First off, I would like to recall the tweets regarding bridging academics and personal experiences in the classroom as a means of learning.  Something I am finding particularly useful about the Twitter is that it is allowing us to, at some extent, create these bridges. Though our experiences are held to a 140-character limit, it does allow us to bring what we observe, notice, feel, etc., in a precise moment into the classroom. Questions via Twitter also serve as a basis for further inquiry, such as the questions regarding code-switching and world-travelling. These questions, and the ones that are generated in class provide a framework and basis for thought, in and out of the classroom, leading us to form more experiences with the mindset and understanding of what we accomplish in the classroom.

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Literacy and Understanding

Through the Twitter dialogue, I have formed a few questions and fields of exploration that I find especially intriguing.   Some of these thoughts I know will be added to by the readings, and I am really excited to learn and expand upon my knowledge of these areas.  Literacy, by the dictionary and commonly understood definitions, means reading and writing.  A few people tweeted questioning whether music or math had facets of literacy within them.  I completely think they do.  To me, the definition of literacy has always been broader than simply reading or writing, but I am having a hard time defining what exactly literacy can consist of.  I am especially finding it difficult to distinguish between the ideas of literacy and understanding.  Does being literate mean you understand something?  Does understanding something mean you are literate in it?

I think it is important to note that when discussing language, we often observe different dialects and accents as part of the experience of language.  I think that literacy in different disciplines is like speaking a different dialect; there is some common basis, but without the full skill set, it is hard to completely understand eachother.

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