poucna crtica iz Amerike.
Amerikanci uvidjaju nuznost educiranja djece o
trikovima koje novinari i mediji koriste u
bi se nasao netko tko bi organizirao ovakvu
edukaciju za odrasle u Hrvatskoj, zasluzio bi
najvisa odlicja za domoljublje i pomoc zemlji. Ovi
trikovi su toliko mocni da netko poput Mesica moze u
nas postati predsjednik drzave. Ovaj podatak sam po
sebi dovoljno pokazuje svu ozbiljnost situacije i
hitnost ovakvoga programa.
Students learn how media can massage message
Saturday, March 6, 2004
Eighth-grader Bridget Arndt stepped off the C-SPAN
School Bus this week with visions of camera angles
swirling in her head.
Vanessa Melius of C-SPAN had just explained to
Bridget and her peers at Crews Middle School in
Lawrenceville how different shots of political
candidates can manipulate viewers' feelings.
Shooting a candidate from below can make him look
tall, powerful, like a leader, Melius said. Shooting
from above can make the politician look short,
"I never thought about that before," Bridget
said, standing beside the $1 million traveling
classroom. "They have a lot more power than I
State education officials are hoping more
students will get lessons like this one by requiring
for the first time that public schools teach pupils
to be savvy viewers of television news, commercials,
movies, music videos and other media.
Under Georgia's proposed revised curriculum,
which the State Board of Education is expected to
vote on in June, all students would be expected to
demonstrate mastery of "viewing" in their English
classes, along with traditional skills like reading,
writing, speaking and listening.
"When our students go home from school, they
watch TV, they rent movies, they play video games,
they surf the Internet --- they live in a world of
visual text," said Gerald Boyd, associate director
of curriculum and instructional services for the
Georgia Department of Education.
"But . . . students don't have the discernment
skills for visual text," Boyd said. "That's what
we're trying to give them with these standards."
The state has never had such requirements before,
but Gwinnett County, which has Georgia's largest
public school system, has used similar standards
As early as next year, sixth-graders throughout
the state could be expected to identify propaganda
in television commercials or explain the appeal of a
popular television show like "American Idol."
Eighth-graders may be asked to interpret how news
photographers influence people's opinions, and high
school sophomores might be expected to analyze NBC's
coverage of the Iraq war vs. that of Fox News.
As has been the case with much of the curriculum,
the viewing standards have been adapted from
practices in other states, principally Kansas and
California. All states now teach some form of
so-called "media literacy," either in select
subjects like English, social studies and health, or
across disciplines. Georgia officials included the
viewing component in English/language arts for all
grades, from kindergarten through high school.
"I think it's good, it's solid, it's something
that we need to do," said Alan Perry, president of
the Georgia Council of Teachers of English. "But we
have to be careful. We can't just turn our
classrooms into theaters."
Skeptics of media literacy programs question the
merits of teaching what appears to be pop culture,
and adding to teachers' already crowded schedules.
Supporters of the programs say media literacy can be
integrated into every class, and that it helps
prepare students for an information-driven society
by making them better thinkers and higher achievers.
"If you look at Canada, England and Australia . .
. we're in the Dark Ages," said Dave Yanofsky,
executive director of Just Think, a San
Francisco-based nonprofit group that has been
teaching young people how to evaluate and create
media messages since 1995. "We're the only
English-speaking country that doesn't have media
literacy integrated into the curriculum --- and
we're the country that needs it most."
In Gwinnett middle schools, for example, social
studies students are expected to analyze different
interpretations of the same event.
In some English classes, students may be asked to
compare a book and a film about the same subject.
But it's unclear whether even Gwinnett students
are getting in-depth information beyond topics like
propaganda or fact vs. opinion.
The Crews Middle School students --- and some
teachers --- seemed genuinely surprised at what they
learned on the C-SPAN bus, which travels the country
and occasionally visits metro Atlanta schools.
Although the lesson only touched on how
television is produced, eighth-grader Brittany
George said she would definitely be watching TV
"I'll be thinking about the camera angles a lot
more," she said.