The New Media Literacies

"Participatory culture shifts the focus of literacy from one of individual expression to community involvement. The new literacies almost all involve social skills developed through collaboration and networking. These skills build on the foundation of traditional literacy, research skills, technical skills, and critical analysis skills taught in the classroom. These new skills include…" (NML, Massachusetts Institute of Technology)


Below this on Massachusetts' site is listed the twelve new skills. I have below listed the skills in 3 categories of 4 new skills based on relevance in my content area, English and Language Arts.

Collective Intelligence, Distributed Cognition, Negotiation, Visualization

Play, Performance, Transmedia Navigation and Networking

Simulation, Appropriation, Multitasking, Judgment

(These terms are defined more in depth on their webpage.)


Out of all of these terms I would argue that Collective Intelligence is the most important to an ELA classroom. Collective Intelligence is defined as, "the ability to pool knowledge and compare notes with others toward a common goal" and to me, this implies and demonstrates a classroom where active learning is taking place. Especially in ELA, where a text is being used as the means to construct an argument, being able to build off of what is being said around you is valuable and very important in an effective classroom.

On the other end of the spectrum, I would argue that Multitasking is the least valuable of the new skill set in the ELA classroom. This may be biased but I know that I am not the best at multitasking and I do perfectly well in ELA classes. The emphasis on the ability to multitask can be greatly diminished by being prepared so I would encourage my students to be prepared in all areas of their lives to avoid any unnecessary distractions in my classroom.

"Jabberwocky" Rewritten

'Twas glorious and the splashing turtles
Did dash and frolic in the waves
All happy were the boroughs
And the merry people rejoiced.

"Beware the slanderers, my son!
The jaws that bite, the claws that catch!
Beware the little bird and shun
The frivolous bull-crap!"

He took his flaming sword in hand:
Long time the monstrous foe he sought-
So rested he by the Sycamore tree,
And stood awhile in thought.

And, as in brooding thought he stood,
The slanderers, with eyes of flame,
Came whiffling through the brambly wood,
And chortled as it came!

One, two! One, two! And through and through
The flaming blade went thunk-smack!
He left it dead, and with its head
He went gallivanting back.

"And hast thou slain the slanderers?
Come to my arms, my beamish boy!
O fabulous day! Hooray! Hurrah!
He chortled in his joy.

'Twas glorious and the splashing turtles
Did dash and frolic in the waves
All happy were the boroughs
And the merry people rejoiced.

Afterthoughts and Questions

  • When "translating", or putting the Jabberwock by Lewis Carroll, into "real" words there are bound to be differences in translations. Due to experience, differences in interests and vocabulary it would be difficult for two people to come up with the same "real" word for the made-up word Lewis Carroll utilizes. Another reason that various people will get various translations could be attributed to how said individual goes about reading. I knew that I wanted at the very least, a semi-cohesive narrative so I read it through and went by word association and part of speech as frequently as possible.
  • I could not say whether my translation changes the intended meaning of the poem; I don't know the author's intent. However, my translation stays true to my initial response to the poem when it was assigned.
  • My differences do not affect my enjoyment of the poem per se. I do enjoy the abstract nature of the poem in it's original form and the liberty it allows a reader whereas my version of the poem seems to stifle, what I imagine to be, the vision of Lewis Carroll.
  • I am unsure of whether my prior knowledge of the "Jaberwocky" poem influenced my translation; I have read the "Jabberwocky" before and although I have never really discussed it I enjoyed it enough to memorize it but had never thought of translating it. I mostly just enjoyed the sound of the foreign words and their lack of meaning.

Annotative Bibliography


“Discussion-Based Approaches to Developing Understanding: Classroom Instruction and Student Performance in Middle and High School English.”: Applebee, Arthur N., Judith A. Langer, Martin Nystrand, and Adam Gamoran. “Discussion-Based Approaches to Developing Understanding: Classroom Instruction and Student Performance in Middle and High School English.” American Educational Research Journal 40 (2003): 685-730 27 Jan. 2009.


"This study examines the relationships between student literacy performance and discussion-based approaches to the development of understanding in 64 middle and high school English classrooms. A series of hierarchical linear models indicated that discussion-based approaches were significantly related to spring performance, controlling for fall performance and other background variables. These approaches were effective across a range of situations and for low-achieving as well as high-achieving students, although interpretations are complicated because instruction is unequally distributed across tracks. Overall, the results suggest that students whose classroom literacy experiences emphasize discussion-based approaches in the context of high academic demands internalize the knowledge and skills necessary to engage in challenging literacy tasks on their own."

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