Presentation Title

Teaching Teachers Critical Media Literacy

Presenter Information

Jeff Share, UCLA

Biographical Sketch

Jeff Share worked for ten years as a freelance photojournalist documenting situations of poverty and social activism on three continents. In 1995, he became a bilingual elementary school teacher at Leo Politi Elementary School in Pico Union. After seven years, Share left the classroom to work as the Regional Coordinator for Training at the Center for Media Literacy where he wrote curricula and led professional development. He then earned his Ph.D. in the Graduate School of Education and Information Studies at UCLA and now works as faculty advisor in the Teacher Education Program at UCLA with new teachers in the master’s level credentialing program. He also provides professional development training in critical media literacy with teachers in the Los Angeles Unified School District as well as educators across the US and internationally. His current research and practice focuses on the teaching of critical media literacy in K-12 education. In 2015, Share published the second edition of, Media Literacy is Elementary: Teaching Youth to Critically Read and Create Media. In 2017, he co-published Teaching Climate Change to Adolescents.

Type of Presentation

Individual presentation

Brief Description of Presentation

Responding to the need for educators to enter the work force prepared to teach K12 students critical media literacy, at UCLA we have created a critical media literacy course for educators. In this session I share the critical media literacy framework that is the cornerstone of our work, as I demonstrate activities and review lessons we have learned from our K12 pre-service teachers who have taken the critical media course and are now teaching full-time.

Abstract of Proposal

Today’s youth are immersed in a world in which media and technology have entered all aspects of their lives and society, yet few teacher education programs are preparing teachers to help their students to critically understand the potential and limitations of these changes. It is crucial that new teachers learn how to teach their K-12 students to critically read and write everything, from academic texts to social media. This means that schools of education responsible for training the new wave of teachers must be up-to-date, not just with the latest technology, but more importantly, with critical media literacy theory and pedagogy in order to help teachers and students to think and act critically, with and about, information communication technology (ICT), media, and popular culture. Unfortunately, there are few teacher education programs anywhere in the world that are teaching this (Hobbs, 2007). Even in Canada, where media literacy is mandatory in every grade from 1-12, most new teachers are not receiving media literacy training in their pre-service programs (Wilson & Duncan, 2009).

At our university we created a course on teaching critical media literacy for new teachers in 2012, and since then, about 150 teacher education students have taken this four-unit class each year in order to earn their State Teaching Credential. More than half of the students are people of color and nearly 75% are women. The course has been highly popular with students, receiving consistently strong scores on the end-of-quarter student evaluations. Many students have commented about applying lessons and ideas from the class immediately in their classrooms or student teaching. One student reflected in an anonymous course evaluation, “This was an amazing, thought-provoking and fun course with the perfect balance of theory and practice. Every night we left with practical lessons to try with our class, and a solid knowledge of the theory and readings behind them” (XXXX EIP, 2012).

Start Date

2-24-2018 2:50 PM

End Date

2-24-2018 4:20 PM

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Feb 24th, 2:50 PM Feb 24th, 4:20 PM

Teaching Teachers Critical Media Literacy

Today’s youth are immersed in a world in which media and technology have entered all aspects of their lives and society, yet few teacher education programs are preparing teachers to help their students to critically understand the potential and limitations of these changes. It is crucial that new teachers learn how to teach their K-12 students to critically read and write everything, from academic texts to social media. This means that schools of education responsible for training the new wave of teachers must be up-to-date, not just with the latest technology, but more importantly, with critical media literacy theory and pedagogy in order to help teachers and students to think and act critically, with and about, information communication technology (ICT), media, and popular culture. Unfortunately, there are few teacher education programs anywhere in the world that are teaching this (Hobbs, 2007). Even in Canada, where media literacy is mandatory in every grade from 1-12, most new teachers are not receiving media literacy training in their pre-service programs (Wilson & Duncan, 2009).

At our university we created a course on teaching critical media literacy for new teachers in 2012, and since then, about 150 teacher education students have taken this four-unit class each year in order to earn their State Teaching Credential. More than half of the students are people of color and nearly 75% are women. The course has been highly popular with students, receiving consistently strong scores on the end-of-quarter student evaluations. Many students have commented about applying lessons and ideas from the class immediately in their classrooms or student teaching. One student reflected in an anonymous course evaluation, “This was an amazing, thought-provoking and fun course with the perfect balance of theory and practice. Every night we left with practical lessons to try with our class, and a solid knowledge of the theory and readings behind them” (XXXX EIP, 2012).