On April 6th and 7th, 2009, 16 teachers attended a workshop on Media Literacy. These teachers from Habib Girls’ School, St. Michael’s Convent School, Shahwilayat Public School, PECHS Girls’ School, The M I School, DHA Junior Model School, (Darakhshan branch) and Karachi Grammar School, along with TRC’s Mahenaz Mahmud, explored the issue of the impact of media in our lives … in our physical, social, emotional and intellectual environments.
When they came to TRC on Day 2 of the workshop, some teachers shared that they were viewing the billboards the previous evening on the way home, with a more critical eye … going behind the frame to explore deeper issues. ” Who produces the media we experience?” For what purpose … Who profits? Who loses? Who decides what is added and what is left out?”
One teacher shared that she was asking critical questions regarding the manipulation and manufacture of information, while watching a News Channel with her father that night. He was surprised and asked her “Aaj tum kahan gai theen?” “Where did you go today?” 🙂
By the end of Day 2, the teachers went away more ‘media literate’ and assured Mahenaz that they would work with their students in a more democratic manner, not by telling them what to watch and what not to watch, but to engage them through the many classrooms activities that were shared at the workshop, and through meaningful discussion … they would ‘help’ children understand how to manage their own media diets.
We have one more media literacy workshop planned for this year … and in August we will pilot our Media Literacy Book with two or three volunteer schools.