Educational innovations in youth learning today are bringing to the forefront issues of youth imagination, creation, collaboration, and innovation in a networked world of participatory culture and new media literacies. This forum will showcase design principles and research findings from ongoing partnership projects in Chicago and Oakland in under-resourced public schools and neighborhoods where students work with mentors in designs supporting their creation of video, radio, animations, spoken word poetry, and other media that advance 21st century competencies. Discussions will explore the promise of addressing digital divides and educational inequalities with such designs. The panel will be hosted by Stanford Graduate School of Education faculty member Paulo Blikstein.
Brigid Barron is an Associate Professor at the School of Education at Stanford, is a faculty co-lead of the LIFE center, and directs the YouthLab research group. A developmental and clinical psychologist by training, she studies social processes of learning in and out of school. In a five year NSF supported CAREER award she documented adolescents’ learning ecologies (e.g. learning opportunities across home, school, libraries, virtual communities, clubs, camps) for technological fluency development across diverse communities in the Silicon Valley region. This work used longitudinal methods to document the evolution of interest-based activities, mapping children’s learning to reveal the networks of partners and resources that have supported learning in and out of school. These methods were further developed in a three year grant funded by the John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation that followed students longitudinally as they participate in programs designed to develop their technological fluency through activities such as game design, robotics, and digital movie making. A special focus of this work is articulating what develops as children engage in formal and informal collaborative learning to make and create with new technologies. Most recently, with funding from the National Science Foundation’s Cyberlearning program, she is investigating how networked technologies can generate excitement and expertise development among middle school students learning to become citizen scientists in the state of Maine.
Nichole Pinkard believes that digitally literate kids — those who can critically consume and produce alternative media — grow up to be better citizens. With a B.S. in Computer Science from Stanford University, and an M.S. in Computer Science and a Ph.D. in Learning Sciences from Northwestern University, she is an Associate Professor in the College of Computing and Digital Media at DePaul University, and is the founder of Digital Youth Network and RemixLearning. Both organizations focus on developing digital literacies as tools for extending traditional literacies. Dr. Pinkard is also a co-founder of YOUmedia, a public learning space that immerses high school students in a context of traditional media — books — where they make and produce new media artifacts such as music, games, videos, and virtual worlds.
Elisabeth Soep MA '95, PhD '00 is Senior Producer and Research Director at Youth Radio, the Oakland-based, youth-driven production company that serves as NPR’s official youth desk. The Youth Radio stories Lissa has produced with teen reporters for public media outlets have been recognized with honors including two Peabody Awards, three Murrow Awards, an Investigative Reporters and Editors Award, and the Robert F. Kennedy Journalism Award. With a PhD from Stanford University’s School of Education, Lissa has written about digital media and learning for academic journals ( Harvard Educational Review , National Civic Review , Comunicar ); popular outlets ( Boing Boing, NPR, Edutopia ); and books including Drop that Knowledge (Soep & Chávez, UC Press) and Youthscapes (Maira & Soep, UPenn Press). With Asha Richardson, she co-founded Youth Radio’s Mobile Action Lab, which was among the first projects world-wide in which youth partner with professional designers and developers to create mobile apps that engage their communities. She lectures around the country and has taught graduate classes on ethnography and urban education, most recently at UC Berkeley. In 2011, Lissa became one of six members of the MacArthur Foundation’s Youth and Participatory Politics Research Network, which explores how young people are using digital and social media to express voice and exert influence in public spheres. For more than ten years, Lissa served on the Board of Directors of the United States’ premier youth poetry organization, Youth Speaks (HBO series, 2009 & 2010), where she now serves as an advisor.