Literacy

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I am beginning a “new” chapter of literacy for myself in the CU Denver course INTE 5340. Naively thinking per the title of the course that I was embarking solely in the realm of digital stories, learning more about stories already online. This is the mind of such a concrete literal person. I may be similar to Amelia Bedelia.

My mind just did a sharp turn in thought processes. Delving into our text New Literacies  brings me to a more clear understanding of the term literacy and all that this term touches per every individual world wide.  There is a lot of information to digest, especially if one were to read the resources connected to the text.  I’ve seen the changes from “reading” to “literacy” around me throughout decades beginning in 1983 forward. The perspective of a bilingual (Spn/Eng) teacher, to a foreigner teaching in Costa Rica, to my current co-teaching position for classrooms that are clustered with English Language Learners is—learning has always been about culture. Learning has been about understanding a person and where they are and where they come from in order to best facilitate their learning. It has been about embracing and discovering families.

I WISH we could get away from programs that funnel children neatly into “knows letters/sounds” vs. “does not know letters/sounds” which ultimately pulses them on the flowchart to “remedial” groups vs. stay put because you are OK; these cogs then begin the machine that delineates who they are when standardized testing begins and Maria Elena Lourdes Pacheco becomes a data point vs. a very literate young person in spite of what the statistics show.

This text is already VERY interesting to me. It is like adding in words a foundation that I have been walking upon for some time. We are more than the pronunciation of a sight word that does not fit the rules. “my”…there is no “i”. I resonate with part of the section a ‘loftier’ status for literacy (p.17 New Literacies), so much so, I’ve included it here:

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I will state without hesitation that as a learner, I need to read and many times reread what I am reading to make sense of it all. I need to see how what I am reading, professionally, fits into my life. While this is true and I can understand what I am reading, it is also true, that I am not an eloquent writer.

This course will stretch me, and that will be good. Now that I’ve had an acute thought adjustment about “what I was going to be doing” in this course, I am free to receive and learn which ever way the road curves.