Resources summary

ARTICLE SUMMARY

Resourcessummary

Unit

Kaufman,C.C. &amp Paquette, K.R. (2008). Merging civic and literacy skills.The Social Studies,

99(4)187-190.

Provisionof social studies for students is under increased threat from theneed to create competence in tested social skills. The authors feelthat the civic literacy programs in schools are geared to passingexams as opposed to imparting civic literacy and skills that canactually drive social change. The authors thus suggest a new approachthat combines the academic desires of improving reading and writingskills with the desire with social studies. This approach calls forlearners to determine, apply and synthesize meaning of contentlearned in class and articulate relevant content to communitymembers. This aspect of determining, applying and synthesizinginformation learned in class has been noted to improve understandingand even recall as well as improve academic literacy skills and atthe same time provide social skills and civic literacy to thecommunity. Some of the suggestions include formulation of questionsas post-it notes to self and encouraging an active reading cycle thatrequires learners to predict, respond, and reevaluate information.

Lazere,D. (2005). Readingand writing for civic literacy: the critical citizen`s guide to

argumentativerhetoric. NewYork: Paradigm Publishers.

Thebook covers the area of critical thinking as a very relevant issuefor modern day learns. Although critical thinking is largelyassociated with philosophical studies, the author shows thatcritical thinking is required and applicable in every day decisionswhere individuals can use their knowledge and applying thinkingprinciples to assess knowledge and information. The author provides aseries of current and real life examples to inspire criticalthinking. He introduces the debate on subjectivity or biasness inmedia coverage of some events and discusses the issue of wealthinequality in the US to elicit critical thinking. The author provideswell rounded information on such issues and invites the audience todevelop an informed opinion on the issue. The author shares Weinerthoughts on the issue of information literacy by addressing severalcurrent issues as products and drivers of social change in any givencountry. To the author demonstrates that learning, writing, andpolitics or governance mutually inform each other.

Greco,N. (1992). Critical literacy and community service: reading andwriting the world.

TheEnglish Journal,81(5) 83-85

Theauthor takes a similar stand to Paquette and Kaufman to argue thatliteracy should not be confined to the classroom or educationinstitutions but should be exposed and applied to the real world. Theauthor suggests that students should volunteer in community servicein a range of institutions in order to put into practice theirknowledge. This not only benefits the community but also leads tobetter academic development for the students. The author, then adepartment head at The Ellis School in Pittsburg discusses a programshe implemented using several students in their senior year. Thefindings from the program reveal that by students volunteering incommunity activities and institutions, they to promote civic literacyand at the same time develop further their knowledge and academicskills. The exercise also gives them a new consciousness or voicethat interprets and their knowledge and applies it to solve localissues. In most cases, they get to understand how these social issueshave shaped their lives and how they have contributed towardsdifferent features of society.

Wall,A. &amp Spencer, E. (2009).Literacy and Service-Learning through theMillennium

DevelopmentGoals Voicesfrom the Middle,17(1)16-23.

Thearticle discusses implementation of civic literacy and academicskills for elementary school children. The author notes that thecivic literacy initiatives must be directly linked to academic taskssuch that the students have the basic theoretical knowhow of how toaddress community issues. In the case study, the author notes thatthe school used the United Nations` Millennium Development Goals toidentify critical community issues. Nonetheless the author notes thatthese goals must be applicable to the learners in order to gel itwith skills. The author recognizes that the regular academic syllabusfor most countries is already taxing enough for students to introducenew materials. Therefore, the trick is to enrich existing academicprograms with civic programs to offer on hands experience and alsopromote civic literacy. This is similar to the volunteering effortssuggested by Greco only that the current study applies the approachto younger students who contribution in civic literacy is often timesignored or relegated to minor roles or roles that have no academicvalue.

Weiner,Sharon A. (2011). How information literacy becomes policy: Ananalysis using the

MultipleStreams Framework. LibrariesFaculty and Staff Scholarship and Research.Paper 70. http://dx.doi.org/10.1353/lib.2011.0037

Thepaper examines the feasibility of introducing information literacy asa policy process using a multiple-streams framework. The study ininformed by recognition of an existing gap in the academic skillstaught at school and the actual skills required in the society andworkplace such as government officials. The author is thus interestedin learning whether knowledge in basic and current information suchas political dialogues, trends in public opinion and compellingsocietal problems among others. The author indicates that there isclear evidence that information literacy is a key component in policyformulation in government and private organizations. It has also beenidentified as a potential source of competitive advantage forindividuals and is linked with better adoption and application ofcommunication and information technologies. The author thus suggestsfurther studies to understand the impact of information literacy onsociety including economic development social change. The authorconcludes that information literacy plays an integral role in socialchange and to further promote, it can be introduced and gelled intoacademic social skills programs.

References

Kaufman,C.C. &amp Paquette, K.R. Merging civic and literacy skills. (2008).The Social Studies,

July/August2008, 187-190.