Power of Media Literacy in Social Studies Curriculum: Virtual Collaboration in Teacher Education
Although media production is considered to be a time consuming, difficult, and expensive process, educators need to integrate media literacy and media production into their curriculum in order to prepare new generation for media-rich culture. Rather than just being technical or peripheral, media production must be simple and central to the learning process. In this presentation, I will share my research based on an interdisciplinary online course called, "Rediscovering History through Media Education." This course explores creative strategies to integrate new media and technologies into the social studies curriculum with limited resources and equipment. This presentation promotes literacy through media production in teacher education, describes teacher candidates' reactions, discoveries, and experiences with media, and showcases candidates' exploration of and rediscovery on History. It will focus on reconstructing social studies curriculum in teacher education programs through the process of producing video documentaries; researching historical documents; deconstructing social studies history books and curricula using Semiotics Theory and Multicultural perspective; and exploring activities, exercises, and assessment strategies and tools that align with the curriculum standards addressing Media Literacy and Social Studies curriculum. The study is based on the qualitative research conducted on teaching online classes and investigated over one hundred educators in seven different states. To date, few scholarly studies have investigated either the power of documentary storytelling in the classroom or the impact of media production on multicultural education. This study attempts to fill the gap by outlining the natural links between multicultural education and communication. In conclusion, the main goal of this presentation is to draw on the natural links between media literacy and multicultural education. We will explore how a critical approach to the study of new media combines knowledge, reflection, and action; promotes educational equity; and prepares new generation to be socially responsible members of a multicultural, democratic society.
Keywords: Media Education, Teacher Education, Media Literacy, Social Studies Curriculum, History, Multicultural Education
Dr. Melda N. Yildiz
Faculty, Secondary and Middle School Education, William Paterson University