Sunday, March 24, 2013

Talking Point Seven: Cinderella Ate My Daughter (Peggy Orenstein) and Brave

While I read Cinderella Ate My Daughter last semester it was interesting to re-read again this semester in the context of connecting it with Brave.  I noticed I highlighted and noted different parts of the reading and picked up on things I hadn't last semester.

In the beginning of Orenstein's article she writes:
"...the passive, personality-free princess swept off by a prince (who is enchanted solely by her beauty) to live in a happily-ever-after that he ultimately controls."

This particular quote reminded me of Brave; Brave is not the stereotypical Disney princess movie we are all used to. There is no princess with a flowy gown and perfect hair who gets prince charming in the end.  Instead we see a strong-willed girl, determined to change her mother's mind and get what she wants and ultimately she does.  In no way is Merida the passive princess Orenstein is talking about.  She is not swept off her feet and whisked away by her prince.  Merida is the princess with determination, she defies the stereotype Disney has been shoving down our throats for years.  Her beauty is not what is important to her, neither is finding prince charming.  Making her mother listen and being able to live her life the way she wants...being able to just be herself--that is what she values.

Orenstein also writes:
"...teenage girls and college students who hold conventional beliefs about femininity--especially those that emphasize beauty and pleasing behavior--are less ambitious and more likely to be depressed than their peers."

When we see Merida in Brave we are not seeing a girl emphasizing her tiny waist or her flawless face.  She is certainly not trying to please anybody but herself.  Teenage girls have this belief that they need to be beautiful and please everyone but as we see in Brave that is not the case.  Sometimes the only person we need to please is our self and that is where beauty comes from.

On page 17 Orenstein writes:
"...they now feel they must not only "have it all" but be it all: Cinderella and Supergirl.  Aggressive and agreeable.  Smart and stunning."

This quote reminded me of Merida because in a sense she kind of compromised.  She was aggressive, definitely not agreeable though.  However she was smart and stunning in her own right.  She knew what she wanted and was determined and was not going to let anything stop her, not even her mother.  Teenage girls today feel they have to be everything all at once--be everything but be it in moderation if you must.

Monday, March 18, 2013

Final Project Ideas

For the final project I want to tie this class in to something that is really important to me which is the issue of body image.  While we were working on the midterm project I had mentioned to Jess that I wanted to somehow incorporate the texts we've learned this semester into the topic and rising issue of body image and how it is affecting our teenagers today.  As I've posted on my blog before (I think I've posted it for this class, maybe I'm confusing it with last semester) my sister has been battling an eating disorder for the past seven years so I see first hand every day what type of influence society and the media can have on a person's self image

of course it stem's from much more than just the media but my focus for the project would be the media's influence

I feel the issue is something I know a lot about & is something I have a lot of interest in--I don't think I would want to focus on just negative body image though because I think the media also influences teen to have a positive body image when presented in the right way.

I would definitely want to work in a group--I love having other people to bounce ideas off of and see things through another set of eyes.

Friday, March 1, 2013

Midterm Post!

For my midterm project I'm working in a group with Jessica Parenteau, Alexa Comparone and Noelle Patenaude.  We are going to show what we've learned so far this semester by interviewing students around campus and getting their perspectives about teenagers.  We're going to ask them about four questions, each question relates to a different course reading we've done so far this semester.

The interviews so far have been really mixed--the answers have been really quite different; we're really not sure what we're going to get from people but we're interested and excited to see (:

Each of us is responsible for a course reading as well that corresponds to a particular question as well.  So far we've done two days worth of interviews and are going to meet on Sunday night.  Over the weekend I'm going to re-read & analyze my article which is Hine's Rise and Fall of the American Teenager.

I'm excited to see how this project is going to turn out because we've never really worked with iMovie before!

Talking Point Five (Hyperlinks) Michael Wesch

I chose to read the article From Knowledgeable to Knowledge-able: Learning in New Media Environments and think Wesch raises an important and widely debated topic about technology in the classroom and how it is affecting both teachers/professors and students. 
 Wesch says:
 "...this new media environment demonstrates to us that the idea of learning as acquiring information
is no longer a message we can afford to send to our students, and that we need to start redesigning
our learning environments to address, leverage, and harness the new media environment now
permeating our classrooms."

I found this really interesting blog? (I think it's a blog) Redesigning the 21st century classroom by a woman named Susan Murphy .  She is a writer, professional speaker, teacher and digital media specialist (to name a few of her many talents).  In her blog she talk about incorporating technology in her classroom and how she had to "re-design" her classroom to keep up with the 21st century.  She too talks about the "traditional classroom" style like Wesch does and believes that the rows facing an authority figure is not an effective teaching style.  She allows technology in her classroom and in fact even encourages her students to use it..She believes teachers/professors need to embrace this new advancement in teaching otherwise "we risk making ourselves obsolete."

Wesch is arguing that the reality of the 21st century is that we as students are digital learners.  Technology isn't foreign to us like it is to our professors and teachers, parents etc.  We see our laptops and iPads and smartphones as not only means for communications but also educational tools...we have the entire universe of knowledge right at our fingertips.  I found this YouTube video that I thought was really interesting and went along with Wesch's article.  A group of students K-12 made this video to argue the need for more technology in their schools!

I found these survey numbers, I thought I'd share them with you all (:

In Wesch's article he talks about how teachers/professors find that students are using technology in the wrong way.  They are sitting in class on Facebook or Twitter or other social media sites.  However, I feel that teachers/professors could actually social media sites to their advantage and I found this really awesome info-graphic that outlines how to do so!

A Teacher's Guide to Social Media

Who is suffering from this Knowledgeable vs. Knowledge-able dilemma?  The students or the teachers? 
 Or is it possibly both?