Project leader: Prof. Dr. Andreas Breiter (ZeMKI Lab: "Information Management und Media"
Research association/cooperation: Institute for Information Management Bremen (ifib)
Funding institution: Landesanstalt für Medien (LfM)
In the last 20 years, not only lifeworlds have changed significantly, but also the media worlds of children. Children‘s worlds are increasingly penetrated by media in various forms in the course of ongoing mediatization, and children‘s media appropriation is highly differentiated. The concept of media worlds emphasizes the relevance of media for children that continues to grow, not least through digital media.
The growing importance of digital media in the lifeworlds of children in general and specifically for school learning and teaching and media education in particular has consequences for transformation processes in elementary school. A comparison of the analysis of media education in elementary school in the year 2000 (Tulodziecki & Six 2000) and our study on media integration in elementary school from 2012 (Breiter et al. 2013) shows a profound transformation process. Twelve years ago almost 70 percent of teachers interviewed did not use a computer in class at all (and 98 percent did not use the internet). It was only 8 percent in 2012 (26 percent with respect to the internet). Digital media are used, on the one hand, like conventional media or in an over the decades established fashion (only the producation or distribution happens in digitized form, such as with movies, photos or text for the student online media). On the other hand, side digital media has gained relevance as learning tools (in almost all subjects, but especially with respect to writing and research). Educational practice does not change necessarily, but digital media are often used alongside existing teaching methods and techniques. Thus, the critical reflection of advertisements is usually of the hightest priority, while issues such as data security, privacy or personal rights are rarely content of the lesson. The authors conclude that the altered relevance, especially of digital media for children, and the resulting necessity to address these changes in media pedagogy adequately, has not found a reasonable response in elementary school. The reactions of many teachers on the non-school media habits of children seem to be mainly characterized by uncertainty, mistrust and rejection. Against this background, the promotion of media literacy is often reduced to a kind of „danger management“ and the teaching of instrumental-technical user skills. The reflexive use of media is a rarely practiced goal of promoting media literacy in elementary school.
The media passport tries to fill exactly this gap. With its help, parents and teachers should have the opportunity to to teach safe and responsible use of media to children. The media passport consists of three elements: first, the competency framework is intended to provide parents and teachers orientation as to which kind of skills children and adolescents should acquire, depending on whether they are children in elementary school, adolescents in the 5th/6th grade or adolescents of lower secondary education (7th to 10th grade). Secondly, the curriculum compass points out how the competences of the media passport can be achieved and contains practical advice and suggestions for teachers. The actual media passport documents, thirdly, which skill levels have already reached by the students and is meant to motivate for further study of media. The accompanying survey on the media passport investigates, based on the previous results, how the media pass port supports the promotion of media literacy in elementary schools. Using the triangulation of qualitative methods (4 school case studies) and quantitative methods (representative teacher survey and the analysis of websites‘ log files), the question of the effectiveness of the instrument is in the foreground. In addition to typical usage scenarios and the evaluation of the content, the requirements in each school will be ascertained that promote the successful use of the media passport. For the evaluation it is also important which role the media passport plays for inclusive education. The results of the study will be available for the further development of the services.