Critical Digital Literacy A2: Part 2


UPDATED: February 3, 2017

How are teachers in the primary division able to incorporate critical digital literacy by engaging meaning making among students through digital media content?

Taking the feedback from the first assignment I was able to narrow down my question to be focused around bringing meaning making into critical digital literacy in the primary grades. My work plan for this assignment is to research more about what critical digital literacy is and how to incorporate this style of learning into the primary grades. As well as research one of the five elements of critical digital literacy, meaning making. Focusing on how meaning making can be used to engage critical thinking among digital media content in primary grades. Overall, working towards a summary of information that connects to critical digital literacy and meaning making. Having this basket of knowledge to refer to will help me better understand the different components that go into meaning making in digital literacy. I am interested in meaning making with critical digital literacy, as I want to know how to foster this element in the primary grades. I am especially interested in how to create meaning with students that are in the early stages of reading and writing.

Through research there are many ways to incorporate media use into the classroom through different outlets. But in today’s society, how can you incorporate this digital literacy into a means for students that are in the beginning phases of writing and reading? Engaging in meaning making is one of the five components of critical digital literacy, it means that the student can make inferences about the form of media where they are both understanding and interpreting the media with a critical eye.

Walsh states that:

Social collaboration is central to this notion of creative learning, where youth evaluate and rationalize their opinions; gather knowledge with/from others; share knowledge with one another; and transform their existing understandings as learners in a constant process of personal and social development.

I agree completely with this statement, students have access to this creative outlet in today’s society, with social media such as Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and so much more, it is easy to find any kind of information that you want at the push of a button (or touch of a screen).

These are the five components of critical digital literacy and what they mean.

The blog “Purposeful Technology-Constructing Meaning in 21st Century Schools” has some great tools to incorporate digital literacy into the classroom that I feel can be developed for primary grades as well.

Some suggested activities to promote Digital Literacy, higher order thinking and construction of meaning in your classroom:

  • Use an interactive whiteboard as often as possible to design and deliver lessons. Promethean and Smart Notebook have websites with teacher created lessons if you are not yet comfortable designing your own.
  • Allow students to maintain blogs, wikis, web pages related to their learning.

  • Engage in email/video chat exchanges with students from other countries.

  • Utilize storytelling media to allow students to create and publish stories.

  • Set up a blog site/Facebook page and post weekly discussion questions for students to respond to. Encourage them to respond to each other too!

  • Use video cameras to dramatize stories, record scientific experiments and expose students to video editing software to create video productions of learning.

  • Engage students in discussions about how and why various media work well to showcase learning and why others do not. Thinking critically about the medium use to  present a message is just as important as the message itself.

Walsh, C. S. (2007). Creativity as capital in the literacy classroom: Youth as multimodal designers. Literacy, 41(2), 79-85. doi:10.1111/j.1467-9345.2007.00461.x

“having the knowledge and ability to use a range of technology tools for varied purposes.” (Quick Links)

This blog will continue to grow every week, stay tuned. 

Quick Links. (n.d.). Retrieved February 03, 2017, from



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