RE: [xmca] dynamics of learning and development

From: Lin Wen-Chuan <lwc55410 who-is-at>
Date: Tue Dec 04 2007 - 04:58:00 PST

To Peter, Eric:
Regarding Scribner & Cole's (1981) seminal work in Liberia.
I'm a new member in XMCA, currently completed a PhD study titled:
Culture, Ethnicity and Engliah Language Learning: A socio-cultural Study of Taiwanese Secondary school Students',
which replicated S&C's special designed questionnaires in fieldwork.
S & C's specific questionnaire explored many detailed everyday situated literacy practices,
which in turn helped my PhD to chart a broad picture of how Taiwanese secondary students learn and use their foreign language in various situations.
I'm, personally, indebt to this seminal work.
In particular, their notion of 'practice account of literacy' was influential that guided the investigation of language learning 'out sides of the classroom'.
In some sense, this notion appears to parallel Rogoff's (1995, 2003) notion of 'three planes of analysis', Lave & Wenger's 'communities of practice' (1991, 1998)
Looking forward to read the 'Handbook of Adolescent Literacy Research'
and hearing any further thoughts over the implications of S & C's (1981) work.

Dr. Wen-Chuan Lin
Research Fellow
Centre for Sociocultural and Activity Theory Research
Department of Education
University of Bath

From: smago@uga.eduTo: xmca@weber.ucsd.eduSubject: RE: [xmca] dynamics of learning and developmentDate: Thu, 29 Nov 2007 11:43:14 -0500

Philip, we do cover that. Here’s the TOC:
Leila Christenbury, Randy Bomer, and Peter Smagorinsky: Introduction
Donna Alvermann: Social and cultural contexts of adolescents
Sam Intrator, Rob Kunzman: Who is the adolescent today?
Judith Langer: Creating contexts for literacy
Larry Johannessen, Thomas McCann: Adolescents who struggle with literacy
David O’Brien, Roger Stewart, Richard Beach: Strengthening reading skills among proficient readers
Ruth Schoenbach, Cynthia Greenleaf: The nature and development of academic literacy
James Marshall: Literacy standards and assessments
Linda Harklau, Rachel Pinnow: Second language writing
Arnetha Ball, Jamal Cooks: AAVE and literacy
Joan Rhodes, Valerie Robnolt: Digital literacies in classrooms
Robert Burroughs, Peter Smagorinsky: Literacy in the secondary English curriculum
Michelle Zoss: Arts in the language arts
Allan Luke, Annette Woods: Large-scale policies for adolescent literacy
Jo Worthy, Holly Hungerford-Kresser, Angela Hampton: Effects of tracking on literacy
Anne Beaufort: The literacy demands of the twenty-first century workplace
Kathleen Yancey: The literacy demands of entering the university
Rebecca W. Black, Constance Steinkuehler: Literacy in virtual communities
David Bruce: Media literacy
Cynthia Lewis, Antillana del Valle: Literacy and identity
Carmen Martinez-Roldan, Maria Franquiz: Latino/a youth literacy
Yolanda Majors: African American literacy in schools and communities
Michael Smith, Jeff Wilhelm : Literacy issues and young men
Barbara Guzzetti: Literacy issues and young women
Wayne Martino: Literacy issues and GLBTQ adolescents
Danling Fu, Jennifer Graff: Newcomer youth and literacy
Mary Belgarde, Richard Meyer, LoRe: Native American youth literacy

Peter Smagorinsky
The University of Georgia
125 Aderhold Hall
Athens, GA 30602

From: [] On Behalf Of White, PhillipSent: Thursday, November 29, 2007 10:32 AMTo: eXtended Mind, Culture, ActivitySubject: RE: [xmca] dynamics of learning and development

this sounds promising - reminds me of Lave's article in MCA some years back on learning - question: any sections of literacy for adolescents who speak english as a second language?





Phillip A. White, Lecturer

University of Colorado at Denver, Health Sciences Center

School of Education, Human Development

Teacher Education


From: on behalf of Peter SmagorinskySent: Thu 11/29/2007 6:56 AMTo: 'eXtended Mind, Culture, Activity'Subject: RE: [xmca] dynamics of learning and development

Just one addendum: Two friends and I are editing a Handbook on AdolescentLiteracy (Guilford, 2008). When writing the intro and defining literacy,when all was said and done and after reviewing much writing on the topic, wereturned to Scribner and Cole's definition from way back in 1981:This review suggests the importance of Scribner and Cole's (1981) insightthat literacy is a social and cultural practice, i.e.,a recurrent, goal-directed sequence of activities using a particulartechnology and particular systems of knowledge . . . [a set of] sociallydeveloped and patterned ways of using technology and knowledge to accomplishtasks. . . . [Literacy consists of] a set of socially organized practiceswhich make use of a symbol system and a technology for producing anddisseminating it. Literacy is not simply knowing how to read and write aparticular script but applying this knowledge for specific purposes inspecific contexts of use. The nature of these practices, including, ofcourse,
 their technological aspects, will determine the kinds of skills("consequences") associated with literacy. (p. 236)I haven't found anything better. PeterPeter SmagorinskyThe University of Georgia125 Aderhold HallAthens, GA 30602smago who-is-at Message-----From: [] OnBehalf Of ERIC.RAMBERG@spps.orgSent: Thursday, November 29, 2007 8:14 AMTo: eXtended Mind, Culture, ActivitySubject: [xmca] dynamics of learning and developmentIn my personal quest for understanding on this subject I keep returning tothe grand text of the "Psychology of Literacy by Scribner and Cole. I havethe 1999 reprint. The importance this text plays for me is I see it as aculmination of the many ethnographic studies undertaken to understandcognition in context. It has help me greatly in my understanding ofworking with the students who attend my school with th
 eir varying degreesof disabilities. I submit quotations from Chapter 14 for yourconsideration:"In this book we have made a seemingly relentless descent from the generalto the specific. We began with grand and ancient speculation about theimpact of literacy on history, on philosophy, and on the minds ofindividual human beings; we ended with details of experiments on mundane,everyday activities that would, under other circumstances, probably escapeour notice or our interest. Instead of generalized changes in cognitiveability, we found localized changes in cognitive skills manifested inrelatively esoteric settings. Instead of qualitative changes in a person'sorientation to language, we found differences in selected features ofspeech and communication. . . .we believe it is important that we haveidentified skills that are associated literacy learning. . .To give asatisfactory account of the nature and significance of the differences wefound-and failed to find-we would need t
 o draw on some well-specifiedtheory of cognition. . .no such theory was at hand. Within anthropologyand sociology, we encounter theories of the "Great Divide" variety. . .adominant trend is to consider cultural inventions, such as literacy, asunrelated to basic processes of intellectual development; literacy mayinfluence how society does its work but not the structures of mentaloperations (piagetian theory). we made progress in finding terms moresuitable for specifying culture-cognition relationships than the antimoniesoffered by existing theory. . . We call this framework a "practice accountof literacy" to emphasize that it is neither a formal model nor a grandtheory but a preliminary attempt to bring new question to our enterprises."any thoughts?eric_______________________________________________xmca mailing listxmca who-is-at weber.ucsd.edu mailing listxmca@weber.ucsd.eduhttp://dss.ucsd.ed

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