Tuesday, April 21, 2009

Visual Media Texts

First of all I think the beginning of this article was difficult to understand. It confused me a lot and did not care for it. It was not until page 70 that things started to make sense. "The main sentence that stood out to me on that page is where it states "This emphasis on the visual presentation of information is manifested broadly in our culture and represents an important "turn to the visual". This makes me think of how now days we rely and learn from visual representations like the t.v. or the internet. Also makes me think about how our culture is more about learning visually and hands-on rather than just lecture like in the past.

"When English composition teachers have thought to bring visual forms into their classes - a practice which they have practiced for @ least 40 yrs. - they have typically presented them as 2nd-class text: either as "dumbed down" communications that serve as "stimuli for writing but [...] no substitute for the complexity of language" or as texts related to, but certainly not on an equal footing with, the "real work of the course". I can definitely see this because when I was younger my teachers used videos, computer games, and even tape players at times when teaching the class a new concept. The teachers usually used the media text as a tool for what she was teaching us that day or what we had already read in our textbooks. It's kind of surprising to realize that teachers have been using visual forms into the classes for the past 40 yrs. but not really using it to introduce a new concept.

If teachers become more comfortable and confident about using visual media texts to teach or use in the classroom than obviously it will be a more common tool used. There are a variety of approaches listed started on page 73 which teachers can use to provide media texts in the classroom and incorporate them frequently. The activity stated on the visual essay as a classroom activity and the one as a homework activity seem pretty cool. I think it is neat that the article gives examples, especially on a topic that teachers may not be comfortable with.


ayiaforJesus` said...

Brittany, I agree this article was hard to read. Teachers will become more apt to use visual media texts in the classroom if they have more experience and training on how to use media texts in the classroom.

Lauren Rigney said...

I too found the article difficult to read. This reminds of what I mentioned in my blog about the presentation of text. It is funny how much we pick up by just watching tv or using the internet. For example, how many random facts can one share thanks to a commercial or a webpage that we have reviewed? Ironically both of these things (TV and Internet) are forms of digital literacy. Since it is so easy to pick up knowledge from these forms of text, it should be a no brainier to implement them into the classroom. Once the fear of embarking into the unknown in conquered, digital literacy can be a great and helpful learning tool for students to take part in.

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