Welcome to 21st Century Techno Literacies!
Welcome to what? Okay, you get the whole “21st Century” concept seeing how we like, live in it. 🙂 But what do we mean by literacies in the 21st Century? The National Council for Teachers of English (NCTE) has it dead on defined:
Literacy has always been a collection of cultural & communicative practices shared among members of particular groups. As society & technology change, so does literacy. Because technology has increased the intensity & complexity of literate environments, the 21st century demands that a literate person possess a wide range of abilities and competencies, many literacies. These literacies—from reading online newspapers to participating in virtual classrooms—are multiple, dynamic, & malleable.
Gotcha. How we communicate, educate and entertain ourselves is techno-evolving at a startling rate for the “ear-bud generation”… kids have wires hanging out of their heads, Droids, iPods/iPhones in their palms & pockets, twittering & texting 24/7… and literacy trends are catching a ride on this big techno wave.
Humm… Like what? The best example is Patrick Carman’s multi-media format Skeleton Creek and the sequel Ghost in the Machine. A mysterious ghost story… it’s a journal… it’s online videos… it’s one story intertwined by two different medias, uniting You-Tubers and readers under one techno umbrella.
Skeleton Creek is the most cutting edge ‘hybrid” format in that the story is truly half video and half book. Of course you can watch the videos online without reading the journal, and vice versa, but with gaping holes in the story. It would be like watching your favorite weekly show every other week and being like, huh? Did I miss something? Um, yes. (And that would be lame. So grab the awesome book, read it, watch the videos, and get the max-extreme storytelling impact… you won’t be sorry). But this is only one example of multi-media literacies out there catching that wave.
Take 39 Clues. WAY fun! This is a multi-media format in that the story from the adventure books is enhanced by online gaming, contests, card collecting and other activities to create an exciting interactive experience. 6 of 10 have been released with number 7 coming in February 2010. Quite the techno frenzy… And huzzah! They’ve got kids reading again!
And that is ALL I’m going to say here!
This is just a “taste” of full reviews to come!