This post is Part 2 of my debrief of the two days I spent at the Learning from Hollywood conference put on by the Joan Ganz Cooney Center at Sesame Workshop and held at the USC School of Cinematic Arts. I attended representing ConnectEd: The California Center for College and Career. I’ve grouped my thoughts by theme rather than chronology, though please note this post expresses my own opinions and experience not ConnectEd’s. My five themes are:
- Respect Your Audience
- It’s the Participation, Stupid
- Parent Attitudes Matter
- Digital Media to What End?
- Cool Stuff to Check Out
In order to respect my audience’s time, I covered the first two in the previous post and now for the other three. Here we go.
Parent Attitudes Matter
This would be the topic where my own thinking has challenged most. Frank Gilliam, Dean of USC School of Public Affairs, and Linda Burch, Chief Education Officer of Common Sense Media, talked about research on parent attitudes toward digital media.
Gilliam spoke about the mental models parents and the public have around digital media, around learning, and around early childhood education. (Great video clip here on Henry Jenkins blog.)
I’m big on the idea that unconscious mental models shape how we interact with the world. But I didn’t like hearing what his research had to say about the mental models the public – and parents – hold in these areas. To paraphrase…
- For the public, digital media = entertainment, a luxury.
- Entertainment = passive, artificial, dangerous, passive.
- Therefore, don’t bring that stuff into our schools.
I had a visceral negative reaction. I don’t believe that! My fellow parents don’t believe that! We want more technology in our schools! Continue reading