What is literacy? Typically, when presented with this question, individuals respond with: “reading, writing, talking, and listening”; however, when I pause and consider this question, literacy means so much more. The word literacy does not have a fixed or uniform definition, and individuals often use it in many different ways. While I don’t find it necessary to be constrained by a set definition, I do think understanding what it means to be literate in our society is a valuable asset. As a future teacher, I believe that being able to understand what it means to be literate in our current culture is a necessary starting point to understanding how to teach children literacy.
After reviewing the syllabus, overview, and class objectives of this course, I can’t wait to begin! I love literature, writing, discussing books and pretty much everything that relates to literacy and I am excited to begin the process of learning how to instill that same love into my students. I hope that this class will present me with opportunities to teach my students in ways that are innovative and exciting. Nowadays, children are glued to their TVs, computers, and cell phones; therefore, teachers have to work that much harder to develop lessons that are engaging for their class. I would love to leave this class with ideas on how to teach students using media that is modern and immediately applicable to their daily lives. As I said before, literacy does not have a fixed definition and teaching literacy should not be a fixed process. It is ever changing; as are the children we are focused on teaching. My goal is to leave this class with fresh and exciting ways to teach children literacy. I hope to discover what it means to be literate and teach literacy in the 21st century.
I took a few minutes to look at what you wrote, Brooke, and I feel similar to you, in regards to your views on teaching in an urban setting. It is something that I am completely open to. I may not have the experience of teaching in an urban setting, seeing as how I’ve been placed in Okemos and Holt public schools while at Michigan State University, but I believe that I can handle it. Obviously, it will be much more difficult than teaching in a school that has the money and resources to provide their teachers with all the latest technologies and aid; however, I think it could be an extremely rewarding challenge. I’m not sure how familiar any of you are with the book/movie “Freedom Writers”, but it is a story of a female teacher accepting the challenge of teaching highly at risk students. She helped those children and it was a very inspiring movie. I realize that is not typical, but it is something I would strive for. Check out the trailer HERE.
That’s all for now! Here is a video I found on Youtube. It is relatively long but if you have a minute, take a look!