There are many professional organizations that can help literacy experts stay involved in the profession beyond their classroom or school assignment. Students in the spring semester of READ 6325 explored various professional organizations and are sharing what they learned through this blog series.
by Yadira Gonzalez
The Center for Media Literacy (CML) is a professional organization that provides teachers, researchers, parents, and any individual who is searching for answers about media and the effect it has on everyone, especially children and young people of the 21st century. You can browse through the available information that the Center for Media Literacy provides at http://www.medialit.org. In order to fully benefit from this media site you can subscribe and become a member for free in a matter of seconds, yet donations are accepted as a funding source.
The focus of CML is to “develop critical thinking and media production skills needed to live fully in the 21st century media culture.”
For more than 30 years CML has promoted media literacy to schools, afterschool programs, libraries, churches, and community centers expressing the importance of adopting media skills in order to function in the media world today. The Center for Media Literacy contains the following side links, found on the left hand side, offering the public with vast information on how to effectively implement media literacy in “teaching, learning, and in life.”
- CML MediaLit Kit offers numerous educational approaches that facilitate educators with teaching strategies that can be integrated successfully. Project SMARTArt is one of the many approaches listed. This project is offered in schools through a federal grant. It aids the students to develop and strengthen their thinking process abilities to “access, analyze, evaluate and create information” through the use of “Media, Art, Reading and Technology.” In addition, it provides educators with a summary of the project, fast facts of who benefits from this program, lessons with activities to implement into the classroom, and photos, as well as, videos of the students actively engaged through the use of media literacy. It also provides a 42 page case study of how this program has been delivered at the elementary level.
- The Reading Room is an online center with useful articles, research studies, current news and records of the development of media literacy in the U.S.
- Media&Values magazine provides the reader with archived Issues 1-63, beginning in the year 1977 and ending in 1993, offering articles on the impact media has morally on citizens worldwide. In Issue #8 there is an article titled, Stay Tuned…TV Can be Good For You! by Frederic and Mary Ann Brussat. This article mentions how Good television helps the viewer clarify values when having to make a choice when certain situations present, deal with feelings and model right and wrong behavior.
- The Best Practices link provides an overview of how to effectively integrate media literacy into “teaching, learning and in life.”
- Professional Development is a link that provides educators with training opportunities through services, resources and suggestions to support the implementation of media literacy.
- When accessing the Advocacy link you come across a list of organizations that “call for media literacy education.” One organization is Cable in the Classroom which provides the “teacher, parent, caregiver, or learner” with a number of educational topics. “Through the internet, cable content is now available for TV, computers, smartphones, and just about any communications device, anytime, anywhere.”
- Selecting the Consulting and Speaking link, the public is offered with the “who, what, where, when and how” of CML.
- Clicking on the Store link will take you to products such as DVDs, student books, downloadable material, the MediaLitKit and posters to display media literacy information to educate self, students, and staff.
- About CML, Site Overview, and FAQ (Frequently Asked Questions) links present information, questions, and answers on what citizens worldwide will encounter on the Center for Media Literacy website and media literacy.
- The Newsletter link provides a monthly newsletter with “research highlights, current events, teaching tips and MediaLit Moments.” Any individual may benefit by joining the e-mailing list for free, simply supply an e-mail address and voila!
- The Center for Media Literacy can be contacted by mail, phone, fax and e-mail provided on the Contact Us link.
The Center for Media Literacy organization is rich with information on how to implement media literacy into “teaching, learning and in life.”