On 21st century literacies, a lot has come across my radar of late.
First, some great video(s) of Howard Rheingold speaking on/to this. Check it out:
There's also an interesting article in the Charlotte Observer, OMG! Teachers Say Texting Can Be Good for Teens, that's got me fired up (in a good way). In short, a study by researchers (see http://www.csudh.edu/psych/lrosen.htm and scroll down to "Recent Research Study") says that texting may actually help teens in writing informal essays as well as other writing assignments.
Lastly, the official word from NCTE...adopted by the NCTE Executive Committee, February 15, 2008
Literacy has always been a collection of cultural and communicative practices shared among members of particular groups. As society and technology change, so does literacy. Because technology has increased the intensity and complexity of literate environments, the twenty-first 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, and malleable. As in the past, they are inextricably linked with particular histories, life possibilities and social trajectories of individuals and groups. Twenty-first century readers and writers need to
* Develop proficiency with the tools of technology
* Build relationships with others to pose and solve problems collaboratively and cross-culturally
* Design and share information for global communities to meet a variety of purposes
* Manage, analyze and synthesize multiple streams of simultaneous information
* Create, critique, analyze, and evaluate multi-media texts
* Attend to the ethical responsibilities required by these complex environments
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