NAEA Presentation New York

•January 14, 2012 • Leave a Comment

Below, you will find handouts, etc. related to our presentation. They are divided into two sections. “Paper Dolls” and “Messages.” You can email me at if you have any questions, can’t find something you need, etc. We hope you enjoyed our presentation.

The Powerpoint for our presentation is below. Just scroll over link.

NAEA Presentation March 1st, 2012

Paper Dolls (this has all documents related to the unit; just scroll down to find what you need).

The “Paper Doll” Curriculum Unit (including Social Studies Activities) can be found below.

3 week Curriculum plus other docs for unit

The “Messages” Project Documents can be found below

Prompt and Planning Sheet

Artist Statement Prompt


CLMS Conference Documents

•November 4, 2010 • Leave a Comment

Below are the documents that were used in the curriculum projects that I have completed in my class and presented at the CLMS Conference. The title of the workshop was “Think Before You Kick.” On the blog are the projects I have done in their entirety. Feel free to steal, use, revise, email me for questions and/or support.

Media Journal Project Outline

48 hour Media Journal

Mass Communications Model

Paper Doll Unit- 15 Day Outline and Specifics

Lookin’ at and Talkin’ Back Project Outline

Technology as Praxis

•December 7, 2009 • Leave a Comment

EDCT 552: Technology Praxis Reflection:

“The notion of praxis is essential to one’s view of teaching and learning as reflection, actions and change are inherent to these processes” (EDCT 552 Syllabus, 2009).

A shift in thinking about technology

Technology Praxis has been challenging for me on many levels. Not only was the technology aspect of the class challenging but the shift in thinking about technology was challenging as well. I have come to understand that technology is much more than a teaching tool that we can use in our classroom but a “as a change in practice and relations” (Parker, December 2, 2009). My conception of literacy has gone far beyond the ability to read and write or use a computer. I need to think beyond the computers in my classroom as isolated “stand alone” units but as a possible part of everything we do and how we do it. The how is where the shift has been most difficult for me to implement or know how to implement.

Although I am fortunate to work at a project-based integrated curriculum school, I have come to realize how much I do think of technology as a ‘helper’ to the kinds of projects that we do rather than a way of approaching curriculum differently. In the last article we read for this class by Coppola, I was fully hit with this realization. The projects and approach to curriculum in this article could have been a description of our school in terms of constructivist practices, staff collaboration on planning curriculum and implementation, etc. There was one huge piece missing however… constructivist teaching as a goal with computers/technology utilized to help reach that goal.

Computers are part of what we do at our school but they are not part of changing what we do and how we do it; pedagogy. This has been a huge “aha” for me. Does this mean that I now know exactly how to make this pedagogical shift? No; it means that I understand the necessity to do so and I will need support, guidance, help, and collaboration of my peers in order to make it happen.

My teaching does include much reflection of my own practice which leads (and will lead) to action and change in my classroom and hopefully my school. EDCT 552 has allowed (and demanded), much reflection which has and will continue to change my approach to teaching. I have come to fully appreciate that a systematic change (in terms of technology) is interdependent upon my own philosophy of education shifting. This shift must happen first in order to experience a shift in pedagogy and curricula.

Continue reading ‘Technology as Praxis’

Abstract for “Think Before You Kick”

•December 5, 2009 • Leave a Comment

The project proposed and outlined in this paper is an example of a proactive step toward students becoming more media literate and an argument for teaching media literacy in our schools. The paper will argue that schools must take advantage of the time they do have with students to not only teach basic skills such as reading, writing, and computing but to educate students to be critical consumers and producers of media as it has become such an instrumental, integral, and indispensable part of students’ everyday lives. If our students are to become more responsible in terms of the choices they make as consumers and producers of media then they must become more critically literate of it.

As Buckingham explains (2007 a), the focus of digital literacy for the past 20 years has been primarily on access and the use of technology as a tool in classrooms. According to Buckingham, we must shift away from this focus and move toward educating students about the media and can only do this by giving students ways to understand and critique it. This paper will outline and describe a project for helping middle school students to become more media literate.

The paper will first lay out the key concepts in the literature that support the above claims (media literacy vs. media education) and a pedagogical approach to media literacy. Secondly, it will explain how the literature supports the goals of my thesis project titled, “Paper Dolls.” Lastly, it will include the details of the media portion of the project and how it will be woven into “Paper Dolls.’

Think Before You Kick: Creating Media Literate Consumers and Producers in Middle School

•December 4, 2009 • Leave a Comment

(Student work from “Paper Dolls” project)

Think Before You Kick:Creating Media Literate Consumers and Producers in Middle School

By Mary Lynn Bryan, SSU

Professor Jessica Parker: December 2, 2009

Introduction On Friday, November 20th, 2009, a 12 year old boy was assaulted at his Los Angeles middle school by as many as 14 of his classmates. Why…because the boy had been allegedly labeled a “ginger” on Facebook and some of his peers came up with the idea of “Kick a Ginger Day” to be implemented at their school (Gorman, 2009, p. 7).

Adolescents are consumers and producers of media (Buckingham, 2007b; Jenkins, 2006) and the above example illustrates this point. The students involved in this incident were supposedly motivated to attack their classmate based on a message created on Facebook. The Facebook message was inspired by a 2005 episode of the television show, South Park, which promoted prejudice against so called “Gingers” (people with fair skin, red hair, and freckles). The creator(s) of the message encouraged their classmates to “Kick a Ginger” at school. Although this Los Angeles middle school had nothing to do with creating “Kick a Ginger Day,” the school did have to deal with the repercussions of it. Continue reading ‘Think Before You Kick: Creating Media Literate Consumers and Producers in Middle School’

Flip Cam: Five Things You Should Know

•December 4, 2009 • Leave a Comment

Flip Cam


In a physical science classroom, students are learning about physical and chemical changes.  This important concept is key to further studies in chemistry including chemical reactions, energy, and the law of conservation of matter.  The teacher hands out flipcams to the students and presents the expectations of the digital video project each student will complete and present to the class.  The task is for students to look for physical and chemical changes in their homes and neighborhoods. Students are required to find a minimum of 5 of each type of change and film the change in progress.  These changes could be as simple as an ice cube melting, or a fire burning in a fire place.  Students are challenged to find a combination of indoor and outdoor changes bringing the learning into a real-life, everyday context.  Through this medium students are connecting to the content in a meaningful way.  Instead of simply reading a textbook, taking notes, and creating a list, students are in their natural environments linking to the curriculum.

What is it?

The flipcam is a small, lightweight (3-6 oz), portable digital video camcorder. It is user-friendly, containing only five buttons. Recording time varies depending on the model and can range from 60-120 minutes (2-8 GB). It is inexpensive in relation to other digital video recorders ranging in price from $149-199 with special teacher discounts available. It has a built in speaker and LCD screen.
Continue reading ‘Flip Cam: Five Things You Should Know’