ERG SES H 07, Learning and Education
Throughout this paper, I develop a genealogical journey in the context of and through the key moments of the development of my Master’s Thesis. Already conceived as a preliminary project for my PhD studies, it involved an exhaustive search for making my inquiry visible and narrating the tensions and experiences arousing during the implementation of the research project. I started from the interest of exploring and discovering how youth construct their subjectivities the narrative and learning experiences with a group engaged in a literary project.
What follows took place between January and May 2018, during the audiovisual documentation process carried out with high school students from two secondary schools in the city of Barcelona, involved in the educational-literary project First Literary Dates.
Few everyday practices have occupied such an important place in the conformation of the modern subject as readers. Forms of relations and organization, dynamics of work, construction of knowledge, fantasy and pleasure are intimately linked to it. The reading practice goes through our daily life together with the moral constructions that go with (Cruces et al, 2017).
In the midst of the digital era, we find, as Garcés (2013) says, a desire for community and cooperation that is expressed in multiple forms. In this context, new channels and codes have emerged to share reading experiences (blogs, bookyoutoubers, social networks, etc.). Young readers with social networks such as Instagram, Youtube or Twitter, have created virtual reading communities transforming the way of relating to reading. This ceases to be an individual act and becomes a shared experience between equals (Lluch, 2010, 2014).
So, we must ask ourselves, how can reading reinvent an educational community? In what way can reading unleash and activate new relationships between classmates, teachers and school spaces?
In this context, First Literary Dates arises. The project was created three years ago by a language and literature teacher at a secondary school in the city of Barcelona. It consists of organizing a meeting in which high and lower secondary school volunteers comment on the readings, previously chosen from literary menus prepared by their the teacher and the high school students. Menus in which, instead of finding different dishes, you will find readings of different genres and origins (for example, the Japanese, the Italian, the French, etc. menu). Once the readings have been chosen, students from different lower secondary school courses who sign up are assigned a high secondary school "tutor" to follow them up. Finally, a meeting is organised so that all the participants share their impressions, experiences and opinions about the readings and the process experience. (Carbonell, 2017; Miño Puigcercós, R. Perelló Sureda, M. & Sancho, J. M, 2018)
However, this project goes beyond being an activity thought to promote interest in and love of reading and literature. It tries to arise questions that create a knowledge and experiences network that re-configures the idea of reading as an individual activity and process. It encourages youth to relate to people they do not know and to move from their comfort zone to attest to what has affected them when reading. They take responsibility for the fact that what they build has an effect that affects them and other. It talks about them and the decisions they make to explain what they want to say.
This is being the focus of my PhD research project that will deepen the methodology developed in my Master’s Thesis.
For the project development, two key days were decided. The first one, designed for a first meeting between the high school students of both participating schools. Both participating schools in which they would share dance workshops and a short training on the literary mediation gatherings. The second, a general meeting with all participants that took place to share their impressions, experiences and opinions about the chosen readings. When I arrived as a researcher/master student to the schools, I was commissioned to document the second edition of the iniciative. One of the problems coming up was that I was not comfortable explaining only my point of view. With the teachers, we agreed that it would be a much more interesting challenge for students to be part of the documentation process, and to explain their own experience, documenting their learning. This process took place between recess and during a one-hour class every Wednesday and Friday. These sessions touched on issues such as the meaning of visual documentation and its cultural background, developing their idea of how a reporter should behave. For the development of the "documentary," we ''reporters'' organized ourselves into groups. Some were in charge of the almost constant camera recordings, others took photographs to also account for the recording process. They were in charge time management and guidelines to keep the record and help their colleagues. Finally, all of them were creating and deciding the script, which would finally give shape to the final piece. From this process came the material/visible results: -An audio-visual piece in documentary short film format, designed and managed with the students/participants, in which this year experience in the First Literary Dates project was collected. With a duration of thirty minutes, this piece operates as material that gathers and gives shape to the evidence and reflections of this work and not so much to the result of the research. -Photographic record created by the students, made from the selection of all the photographs taken during the phases and events of the project. This book shows and tells the story of the making of the documentary.
Regarding the documentation of a research project and/or in this case, of a pedagogical project such as First Literary Dates, has to do with a method to carry out a reflection on, not only ‘the why’ of ‘what’ one does, but on ‘how’. It is a space and a way to give an account of what underpins the decisions that are made and the implications they have in the story. As explained by Hernández-Hernández (2013) "expanded visual culture has to do with exploring ways of narrating the experience of subjects who participate in social processes" (p. 80). Thus, arriving at the conclusion that in research we cannot avoid the physical spaces, the subjects, the cameras and the affects the experience builds up. As a whole, they all acted in a continuous way (Barad, 2003, 2007), affecting each other, transforming the relations between them. What could have been an individual process became a place of encounter and dialogue. The whole process of recording and photographic documentation and the hours of class time, making decisions to spin our documentary, ended up building a collective memory of this learning event (Atkinson, 2012). The whole of this journey and the agents (human and non-human) involved who were affected, have led me to raise my research on the relationship of young people with reading and which are the community networks that sare woven in the context of contemporary digital society. My PhD project will allow me to farther develop these personated issues.
Atkinson, D. (2012). Contemporary Art in Education: The New, Emancipation and Truth. The International Journal of Art & Design Education, 31 (1), p.5-18. Barad, K. (2003). Posthumanist Performativity. Toward an Understanding of How Matter Comes to Matter. Signs, 28(3), 801-831. Recovered 9th of January 2017 from: http://humweb.ucsc.edu/feministstudies/faculty/barad/barad-posthumanist.pdf Barad, K. (2007). Chapter 2. Diffractions: Differences, Contingencies and entanglements that matter. Meeting the Universe Halfway. Durham & London: Duke University Press. Recovered 9th of January 2017 from: https://smartnightreadingroom.files.wordpress.com/2013/05/meeting-the-universe-halfway.pdf Carbonell, J. (2017). ‘First literary dates’.Crecer como lectores. Pedagogías del siglo XXI. Recovered 9th May 2017. From: http://eldiariodelaeducacion.com/pedagogiasxxi/2017/05/09/first-literary-dates-crecer-como-lectores/ Cruces, F. (Dir.), G. Lluch, R. Zafra , J. López García, G. G. Durán, J.Moreno Andrés, R. Colombo, N.Esteban, A.Esteve, V. Calvo, M. Monar. (2017). ¿Cómo leemos en la sociedad digital? Lectores, booktubers y prosumidores. Madrid: Fundación Telefónica Garcés, M. (2013). “Lectura i comunitat”. A: Nativa.Cat. Barcelona: Indigestió. From: https://nativa.cat/2013/05/lectura-i-comunitat/ Miño Puigcercós, R., Perelló Sureda, M. & Sancho, J. M. (2018). First Literary Dates: un proyecto para promover la pasión por la literatura en el alumnado de secundaria...¡ y mucho más!. Diario de la Educación, Recovered 14th of May 2018 From: http://eldiariodelaeducacion.com/blog/2018/05/14/first-literary-dates-un-proyecto-para-promover-la-pasion-por-la-lectura-en-el-alumnado-de-secundaria-y-mucho-mas/ Hernández-Hernández, F. (2013). La cultura visual en los procesos de documentación sobre cómo los jóvenes aprenden dentro y fuera de la escuela secundaria. Visualidades, Goiânia, vol.11/2, p.73-91. Lluch, G. (2010). «Las nuevas lecturas deslocalizadas de la escuela». En Lluch, G. (ed). Las lecturas de los jóvenes. Un nuevo lector para un nuevo siglo. Barcelona: Editorial Anthropos, p.105-128. — (2014). «Jóvenes y adolescentes hablan de lectura en la Red». En Ocnos: Revista de estudios sobre lectura, 11, p.7-20.
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