chapter  3
20 Pages

Engaging Primary Grade Students in Critical Media Literacy: Jennifer's Lesson

ByDonna E. Alvermann, Jennifer S. Moon, Margaret C. Hagood

This chapter proposes to provide primary grade students with an opportunity to explore their knowledge about superheroes and to construct their self-identity through their perceptions of what it would be like to be the perfect superhero. Free exploration can be a beginning to a critical media literacy lesson, but it should not stop there. It is important that teachers take time to consider their positions on using popular culture in the classroom and negotiate how critical media literacy might be used to teach primary school children about understanding their world. Aside from strength and immortality being important necessities of superheroes, other desirable features came out in the work of the second small group of children. Even the youngest of these students do not buy into popular culture blindly or without conscious and meaningful intentions. They do need to be shown by teachers some different ways of critically examining the assumptions underlying the various popular culture texts that they encounter.