Digital literacies in two low socioeconomic classrooms: snapshots of practice

Henderson, Robyn ORCID: and Honan, Eileen (2008) Digital literacies in two low socioeconomic classrooms: snapshots of practice. English Teaching: Practice and Critique, 7 (2). pp. 85-98. ISSN 1175-8708

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The teaching of digital literacies is regarded as an important facet of literacy teaching in the 21st century. With many literacy tests continuing to indicate that students’ levels of achievement tend to be differentiated along socioeconomic lines, it seems timely to consider the connections between home and school and how these play out in relation to digital literacies. This is particularly important in light of the considerable evidence that has demonstrated how important home-school connections are in ensuring improved traditional literacy outcomes for students from low socioeconomic backgrounds. With these points in mind, this article reports on an investigation into the usage of digital technologies in two middle years classrooms in low socioeconomic suburbs in a regional Australian city. Using a range of ethnographic techniques, the study explored two teachers’ approaches to teaching students how to use digital technologies in one school term. Through snapshots of digital practices in the two classrooms, three issues are considered: teachers’ pedagogical approaches; students’ access to digital technologies at home and at school; and the teachers’ recognition of students’ prior knowledge of digital technologies. The article concludes by reflecting on the need for teachers to draw on the digital literacies that students are using in their out-of-school lives, to make bridges to school learning and thus address the challenge of preparing students to be literate in the 21st Century.

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Item Type: Article (Commonwealth Reporting Category C)
Refereed: Yes
Item Status: Live Archive
Additional Information: © 2008 English Teaching: Practice and Critique articles are copyrighted by the respective authors.
Faculty/School / Institute/Centre: Historic - Faculty of Education (Up to 30 Jun 2013)
Faculty/School / Institute/Centre: Historic - Faculty of Education (Up to 30 Jun 2013)
Date Deposited: 16 Jun 2009 10:15
Last Modified: 09 Oct 2014 06:37
Uncontrolled Keywords: deficit discourses; digital divide; digital literacies; digital technologies; literacy; socioeconomic status
Fields of Research (2008): 13 Education > 1303 Specialist Studies in Education > 130306 Educational Technology and Computing
16 Studies in Human Society > 1608 Sociology > 160809 Sociology of Education
13 Education > 1302 Curriculum and Pedagogy > 130204 English and Literacy Curriculum and Pedagogy (excl. LOTE, ESL and TESOL)
Fields of Research (2020): 39 EDUCATION > 3904 Specialist studies in education > 390405 Educational technology and computing
39 EDUCATION > 3902 Education policy, sociology and philosophy > 390203 Sociology of education
39 EDUCATION > 3901 Curriculum and pedagogy > 390104 English and literacy curriculum and pedagogy (excl. LOTE, ESL and TESOL)
Socio-Economic Objectives (2008): C Society > 93 Education and Training > 9302 Teaching and Instruction > 930203 Teaching and Instruction Technologies

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