The first annual Joan Ganz Cooney Center Symposium held last Friday in New York featured the introduction of three compelling studies on the application of digital medial to improve children’s literacy, learning and development.
The Power of Pow! Wham!: Children, Digital Media and Our Nation’s Future focuses on the recommendation of more than 60 industry leaders, Getting Over the Slump: Innovation Strategies to Promote Children’s Learning, a report by Arizona State University professor and gaming expert James Paul Gee. The third report was a national survey in association with Common Sense Media which was detailed in Friday’s KidScreen Daily.
Gee’s report, which focused on the ‘fourth-grade slump’, a point where students fail to develop reading comprehension, found that digital media has the potential to increase vocabulary. As well Gee found that digital media elicits problem-solving behaviors and attitudes in students and can also be used to track and individualize how people learn.
Gee’s recommendations include: funding digital research and development to invest in what works; establishing a digital teacher corps for the nation’s lowest performing schools among others.
The Power of Pow! Wham! features 60 of the industry’s most respected leaders in child development, literacy, family policy, digital media production and global knowledge and skills.
The report highlights three challenges facing the industry: To build a coherent research and development effort; use digital tools effectively and safety to help students read and with critical thinking; advance digital equity to reach all children.
The agenda for the day-long symposium also featured child-led demonstrations of new technologies and a hands-on forum promoting two dozen of the best digital media initiatives in the world.
For more information on the studies, visit http://www.joanganzcooneycenter.org/ .