In the mind of a CBE

Teaching Information & Digital Literacy with Primary Sources – A CBE Aha! Moment 10.19

Posted by cemignano on

We take great pride in our certification process and the fact that it leads to more student-centered teaching practices with BrainPOP. For more information on how our certification program positively impacts teaching, check out our efficacy report! In the following post, we’ll hear how October CBE of the Month, Darshell Silva, expanded her media literacy lessons with BrainPOP’s primary sources.

1) Tell us your BrainPOP “Aha! Moment” from the certification process. 

Many things excited me during this course. The specific application of BrainPOP that I am writing about here are the primary source activities. I am excited that BrainPOP has primary sources and activities for students that directly relate to many of the BrainPOP topics. The addition of primary sources changed my expectation for using BrainPOP in my teaching practice in that I would no longer have to find primary sources that relate to the BrainPOP topics or come up with related activities. Student ability to understand and evaluate primary sources in their various formats is a big part of my teaching practice. The variety of primary sources and related activities I have found on BrainPOP is excellent. There are pictures, video, documents, audio, and more! Using BrainPOP to teach Information and Digital Literacy will be so much easier. Just about all aspects of what I need to teach can be done using BrainPOP.

2) What is a specific lesson or unit you’ve taught in the past that you will re-formulate with BrainPOP? 

In the past, I came up with an assignment I loved where  students complete a multimedia project in which they combined two pictures (one historic and one recent which were taken at the same site) into one picture. This was a stand alone lesson that did not coincide with any specific unit or topic. It was stand alone because I struggled to find a topic or unit that coincided with the assignment. Students enjoy the assignment but with my limited teaching time, it is hard to justify doing it “just because.”

3) How will you integrate BrainPOP’s new features and tools to replace what you’ve done in the past?

While exploring BrainPOP’s primary source feature within topics that I currently teach, I came across the Media Literacy primary source activity. The activity involves analyzing the picture “General Grant at City Point,” by L.C. Handy from 1902. The picture is actually a combination of 3 different pictures. All four pictures are part of the primary source. The activity consists of analyzing the pictures through the lens of media literacy. I will now incorporate the assignment described previously as the culmination of my new BrainPOP infused media literacy unit! Students will first view the media literacy movie, complete various BrainPOP activities including the primary source analysis activity, then combine two photos (one historic and one recent) as an advertisement for a local venue! I think it will be an engaging activity that students will enjoy that shows something they learned about altering media for advertising purposes.