Tonight: Student Journalism as “THE” 21st century curriculum

Join me today, Thursday, January 17th, for a
live and interactive
interview with Holly Epstein Ojalvo and Esther Wojcicki to talk about
student journalism as “THE” curriculum for the 21st century.

Holly is the founder of Kicker,
a student engagement news site, and when I read about Kicker I emailed and
asked if she’d consider coming on the show to talk about youth capability
and about journalism as a route to self-directed learning. We added previous
guest Esther Wojcicki to the email thread, who graciously agreed to return to
talk about this topic, and who added that she believes journalism teaches kids
“communications skills, self direction, collaboration, technical skills,
[and] critical thinking.” Moreover, she said: “It is THE curriculum
for the 21st century. It also leads to community involvement and social media,
reading news online, [and] staying informed.”

The deeper threads here, for me, are so important. So much of the current
discussion of education reform is based on a schooling model of conformance,
compliance, and dependency–the results of which are not just problematic for
learning, but also arguably support a political and business culture that
resists appropriate scrutinies. Does student journalism provide an important opportunity
to discuss media representation of the news? Can student journalism create
opportunities for student independence and shift their perceptions of their own
agency and adulthood, and their ability to make a difference in the world?

We’ll ask these questions, plus take a look at their impact on what happens in
the classroom. From Esther: “[This] runs counter to the Race to the Top
which stresses testing and control in the classroom. Getting teachers to
relinquish some of their control and getting kids to be the ones in charge of
the white boards (not the teacher) is not easy. The culture of the classroom
has to change and changing culture is tough.” From Holly: “[M]edia
literacy and engagement with current events stretches (or, rather, should
stretch) beyond the classroom. Some teachers think news isn’t appropriate for
the classroom, but what does that mean? News is, basically, the world. Why is
history appropriate but what’s happening now isn’t? Why are old nonfiction
texts appropriate but current ones aren’t?”

I hope you’ll join us. See you online!

Steve Hargadon

Date: Thursday, January 17th, 2013

Time: 5pm Pacific / 8pm Eastern (international times here)

Duration: 1 hour

Location: In Blackboard Collaborate (formerly Elluminate). Log in
at The
Blackboard Collaborate room will be open up to 30 minutes before the event if
you want to come in early. To make sure that your computer is configured for
Blackboard Collaborate, please visit the
support and configuration page

Recording:  A full Blackboard Collaborate recording and an audio
mp3 recording will be available here as well as at the show

Mightybell:  A Mightybell space with interview resources and
conversation is at