December 2011 Archives

Media Literacy Lesson & Studio Project

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"Exposing Gender Stereotypes"

Here is the studio project I did that goes along with the lesson plan on media literacy:

Untitled from Amanda Kral on Vimeo.

Full Lesson Plan:

Lesson Plan.docx

Overview of Lesson Plan:

Grade Level/Age: 11th Grade
Time Needed: Six Class Periods

Focus: To make students thoughtful viewers.


a.)The students will identify the functions of software such as photo editing, video-editing and sound-editing tools, in creating original products for expressive intent. (
b.)The students will analyze the meanings and functions of media arts. (
c.)The students will analyze, interpret and evaluate a variety of media artworks by applying self-selected criteria within the traditions of the art form. (
d.)The students will discuss characteristics of male and female stereotypes in our society.

Motivational Resources:
1. A PowerPoint to show the class that gives a general idea of what media literacy is so they get a better understanding of the purpose of the assignment.
Presentation (Blog).pptx

2. An interactive worksheet where the students will answer questions based on deconstructing a media message and their interpretation of specific gender role qualities (based on the PowerPoint given above).

3. Short clip(s) of the Disney movies that display gender role qualities (specifically for this project: two clips from the Disney movie, Beauty and the Beast.
(Start watching clip from start to 2:39)
(Start watching clip from 3:06 to 4:46)

4. Teacher's blog to show an example of a possible idea for the project.

Art Materials:

•Access to a computer lab (preferably a MacLab where iMovie and GarageBand is available)
•Video cameras (number of how many depends on number of groups there are)
•Memory cards (to store the video data)
•Tripods (optional)
•Props you need to create the movie of your choice
•Flash drives (if possible, one per group to save the data after each class period)


"Media literacy refers to the ability to access, analyze, evaluate and create media messages of all kinds ("Introduction to Media Literacy). Studying and learning about media literacy can help people in many ways understand the world around them. It's an important lesson to learn in schools and in public life. Learning about media literacy allows students or the community to engage in practicing critical thinking skills and be aware of our media culture that we are influenced by every day. There are ten basic fundamental concepts that the study and practice of media literacy is based on including: media constructs our culture, media messages affect our thoughts, attitudes, and actions, media uses "the language of persuasion, media constructs fantasy worlds, no one tells the whole story, media messages contain "texts" and "subtexts", media messages reflect values and viewpoints of media makers, individuals construct their own meanings from media, media messages can be decoded, and media literate youth and adults are active consumers of media ("Introduction to Media Literacy"). One important way to learn and evaluate media literacy is to "deconstruct" messages that creators develop in our digital world. Deconstructing means breaking down or "taking apart" messages that the creator is trying to send to its audiences ("Introduction to Media Literacy"). Some important subjects that are key to look for when deconstructing a media message include: who is the source?, who is the audience?, what does the text say or read?, what are the subtexts that the audience is interpreting while looking or hearing the message?, are there any persuasive qualities to the message?, and whose point of view is in the message? ("Introduction to Media Literacy"). Knowing the basic literary concepts and learning how to deconstruct a media message are two important lessons when learning to be media literate.

**More In-Depth Introduction Displayed In The PowerPoint Attached Above.

Bi-Weekly Report #6: "Class Pager"

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As I was looking for new technology devices, I came across this website that offers free technology for teachers. As I was browsing through the articles, I saw a "class pager" link that allows teachers to send text messages to their students and/or parents and guardians cell phones without even knowing each student/teacher/parent/guardian's number. Basically, the teacher goes to the class pager website and clicks on "sign up your class for free." Once you sign up your class, you will get a specific code and you give that code to you students and/or their parents/guardians. When you give your students and their guardians the code, they text the class pager website with the specific code and they are automatically added to the class list. As the teacher, you can send messages either by phone or on the online website.

I think this is a great idea for students and teachers to be more involved in digital communication with one another. In this generation, almost every student and teacher has a cell phone and/or internet access. This is a great way to send last minute messages to your students for either upcoming assignments that are due (reminders), change of classroom location, or any other messages that are appropriate for classroom purposes. As teachers, we all know that students can be forgetful and this is one way that we can help students remember important assignments or information to keep them on top of things at school! Also, it's common that some students get embarrassed when they are asked to answer a question. Class pager allows an option called "realtime" where the students can text the code and answer the question and the teacher can collect the data to see what the students answered. There are so many ways you can use this technology in the classroom and I think it's worth a try even if you only experiment with it once!

With this type of technology, there are some drawbacks. Even though cell phones are very popular, not all of your students may have a phone. However, that's okay. As the teacher, you could make these reminders as an option for your students and parents/guardians. This technology will only benefit them so if they don't want to participate in it, that's okay! Another drawback of this is that you can't send private messages. I feel that's a good thing so that students and teachers can't text things to each other that isn't school appropriate. Once you have the class roster, every message that you send out, it goes to everyone on the list. Another drawback is that many schools don't allow cell phones in the classroom, or even on school grounds. So, if you have a last minute update, not all of the students might get it because of school cell phone policies. Another drawback is that you are only able to sign up for this site for free once. It only allows you to use it for free for your first class and after that, you have to pay a fee. Also, if students only have a limited amount of text they can send or receive, it could cause charges to be made to their bills. But again, this technology could be just an option for students, it doesn't have to be mandatory!

How I would use it in my own classroom:
If I had my own classroom, I would definitely experiment with this. I think it's great that you can send reminders to your students without knowing each other's phone numbers and since your messages are sent to everyone on the roster, you don't have to worry about inappropriate messages being sent between you and the student, you and the parent or guardian, or from student to student. It's very safe and classroom friendly! I would make this an option for students whether or not they want to receive updates or reminders. If not, it's their loss and hopefully they can remember everything! If I would send out updates, I would also include an alternative note such as an email or note on the classroom door if there are changes for the day. I would also make reminders the day before something is due in person during classroom. However, I think this idea is very clever and I would love to see how it works. If only I had my own classroom to try it out!

Link to where I found free technology for teachers:

Link to website for signing up:

Link to ways you can utilize this technology:


Byrne, Richard. "Class Pager-Text Your Class." Free Technology for Teachers-Free Resources and Lesson Plans for Teaching with Technology. Web. 1 Dec. 2011. .

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This page is an archive of entries from December 2011 listed from newest to oldest.

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