Big Deal Media

K-12 Technology

May 02, 2022 2022-05-02

Professional Growth

Research at the Crossroads of Story, Media, and Social Awareness

X-Media Lab, a research hub in Harvard Graduate School of Education, works at the crossroads of education, media, digital technology, and prevention science—leveraging the power of stories.

A team of X-Media researchers selects meaningful story content from a creative canon within the arts and humanities to help students and teachers reflect on the academic, ethical, and aesthetic importance of stories to promote humanistic values across cultures, phases of human development, genres, professions, and historical periods.

The researchers seek to provide answers to two essential questions that challenge educators every day: How can we promote a “love for learning” through formal and informal schooling? and How do we facilitate the full development of children while helping them prepare themselves for the future?

In response to those questions, X-Media Lab is working on a multiphased project using R. J. Palacio’s novel Wonder, along with the movie adaptation. Wonder tells the story of how a child with a facial deformity navigates relationships with his family and classmates as he enters a school for the first time.

To bring “wonder” into the classroom, the X-Media team has created an illustrated Wonder Educator’s Resource Guide, available in English and Mandarin. The guide provides an introduction to the X-Media approach, cross-media close comparison, and X-Media’s three pillars of ways of knowing framework (aesthetic, academic, ethical). The guide also includes lesson plans that scaffold and adapt to student learning needs and the educator goals in formal/informal learning environments.

Plus: X-Media Lab is developing an interactive website, where students will have the opportunity to engage in discussions and debates around Wonder with students in other schools and even in other countries. Teachers are invited to check out the prototype forum and instructional video on YouTube.

Reading/English/Language Arts Media Literacy Professional Development Digital Literacy

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