21st Century Literacies

I’ve had the pleasure of meeting and hearing Howard Rheingold speak before. He’s a interesting speaker, author, and self-proclaimed “online instigator” who wears hand-painted shoes. But all this aside, Howard is also good at honing in on cultural trends and exploring the implications to society and humanity.

In this recent talk for Reboot Britain (July 09) Howard talks about five critical 21st century literacies. Need a good boost for your brain (or a self-directive cont. education experiences) take 40 minutes to watch, or listen to Howard.

Taken from Howard Reingold’s talk (July 2009)

Howard Rheingold's 21st century literacies:

  • Attention- knowing how to focus and how to divide your attention without losing the ability to concentrate. It’s more than multitasking; it’s learning how to exercise attention.
  • Participation- particularly the more constructive modes of participation that are useful to others
  • Collaboration- being ready to organize together, and enable a collective response to emerge
  • Critical consumption-aka “crap detection” the ability to spot bad info from good.
  • Network awareness- the combination of reputation, social capital, “presentation of self” and other sensitivity to individual positioning within the network collective.

Here's two other tidbits I gathered from his talk:
Literacies = skills + community
Fluency means being able to master these five literacies together.

Important stuff and a good jumping off point for a discussion in libraries and/or education. How do we support the development of these new, and different kind of literacies? How can our services evolve to enable greater participation, collaboration and encourage critical consumption?

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Great questions. Social media literacies and critical literacies are an important and should be addressed in schools.
I think a beginning point for teachers (I am primary classroom teacher) and librarians ( I am a TL-wanna be) would be to collaborate in inquiry based projects relevant to student interest. Have social literacies such as a school blog or podcast be part of the “presentation”. Guide students through worthy applications such as animoto that can strengthen the presentation. Most importantly allow feedback from around the globe.
Teaching questioning of sources and intent of writing/sites teaches digital critical literacy. T.V., cereal boxes and magazines etc. are other places where critical literacy can be applied. Google podcasts by Dr. Luke Allan, as excellent resource on this subject.
Sounds like a dream. To me it is, but I keep hoping and doing what I can.