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Adolescents’ Online Literacies

Connecting Classrooms, Digital Media, and Popular Culture – Revised edition


Edited By Donna E. Alvermann

This revised edition of Adolescents’ Online Literacies: Connecting Classrooms, Digital Media, and Popular Culture features a variety of digital tools for humanizing pedagogy. For example, the book examines numerous artistic representations of young people’s self-selected graphic novels and fan fiction as part of an in-class multi-genre unit on fandom. This edition makes concrete connections between what the research portrays and what teachers, school librarians, and school media specialists know to be the case in their interactions with young people at the middle and high school level. The contributors of these chapters – educators, consultants, and researchers who span two continents – focus on ways to incorporate and use the digital literacies that young people bring to school.
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Chapter 2: Multimodal Pedagogies: Playing, Teaching, and Learning with Adolescents’ Digital Literacies


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Playing, Teaching, and Learning with Adolescents’ Digital Literacies

Lalitha Vasudevan, Tiffany DeJaynes, and Stephanie Schmier

In a computer lab on the sixth floor of a federal building, four young men and one young woman spread themselves out across the machines. Three iMacs were brought in that day and set up adjacent to one another on a long folding table, and eight PCs lined the perimeter of the room. Frankie, the young woman, used one of the PCs connected to the Internet to search YouTube ( for a video she had previously uploaded to the video-sharing site. Bruce sat down in front of an iMac, opened up iMovie, and named his file “slickone,” after the moniker he had earned in his neighborhood. All of the images he wanted to use for his afternoon movie project were on his MySpace page, so he borrowed a flash drive from the facilitator of the digital media dropin hours and accessed his online profile on a PC. After selecting six images, and with Joey’s help, he transferred the images onto the iMovie clip palette. Joey and Bruce worked together to drag and drop the images onto the iMovie timeline, where images and video can be organized into a desired sequence. When Mathu,1 the facilitator, asked if Bruce could find the “effects” tab so that he could apply them to his images, Joey, who was still sitting with Bruce, pointed to...

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