Every August since 1998, Beloit College has released a list they call the Mindset List. The list was originally created as a reminder to faculty to be aware of dated references, and has become an annual look “at the cultural touchstones that shape the lives of students entering college this fall.”
How can we be mindful and stay current ourselves? One way is to incorporate popular culture and current technologies into the classroom.
• Read the English Journal article “Signs of Life’ in the High School Classroom: Analyzing Popular Culture to Provide Student Choice in Analytical Writing” to learn how a high school teacher and his students analyzed cultural objects and practices from ordinary life and popular culture.
• Learn more about “Gaming, Student Literacies, and the Composition Classroom: Some Possibilities for Transformation” from College Composition and Communication.
• Investigate more about of “New Technologies and the English Classroom” in English Leadership Quarterly.
• The Teaching English in the Two-Year College article “Proust, Hip-Hop, and Death in First-Year Composition” explains how hip-hop as content in a first-year writing course offers students a powerful way to connect with their worlds.
• “Examining Digital Literacy Practices on Social Network Sites” from Research in the Teaching of English follows the digital literacy practices of an undergraduate student.
• By examining in turn a son’s craft project, a family photograph, and an image of tectonic plates, the authors demonstrate how objects can elicit rhetorical invention in the College English article, “Evocative Objects: Reflections on Teaching, Learning, and Living in Between“.
• View the on demand web seminar, “Using Popular Culture & The Media to Teach 21st Century Media Literacy Skills” for recommendations for engaging students with popular culture and the media.
“When Shift Happens: Teaching Adaptive, Reflective, and Confident Writers” reminds us to create opportunities for students to experience and respond to new contexts for composing so they will develop attitudes and strategies that will help them succeed as writers in a future marked by rapid change.