Studies of young children’s use of new
technologies in the home confirm that young children engage in a
wide range of digital practices (Davidson 2009), and while young
children’s literacy practices out of school now encompass a range of
digital technologies, school literacy practices remain largely
focused on print-based skills. As the children continue to digest
digital literacy’s, the multimodal nature of online texts means that
young children experience meaning making differently when reading on
screen and when reading print on the page (Davidson 2012).
In the article “Barriers … classrooms” (Honan 2008), Honan discusses
the interviews between students and teachers and digital texts used
by the students at home. It was clear that teachers found it
extremely difficult to think about engaging with any kinds of
literacy work around digital texts. In particular, the barriers
included a lack of teacher knowledge about students’ home uses of
digital texts. To these teachers the skills and knowledge gained in
the home were of little value in the classroom context (Honan 2008).
Brass talks about a permeable curriculum in which dynamic interplay
between students’ “unofficial” worlds (home, peers) and the
“official” world of formal schooling (Brass 2008). Learning between
these two spaces calls instead for the creation of a new, neutral
space in which both home and school funds of knowledge are valued
and where parents and teachers could support children in identifying
where meaningful connections may be forged (Grant 2011).
Even though the teacher was aware of the students' use of digital
technologies outside the classroom, expertise with mobile telephones
and games consoles was not seen as relevant to the classroom
context. It is this re-thinking that is required if schools and
teachers are going to engage in meaningful and successful ways with
digital texts in their literacy classrooms (Honan 2012). "To argue
against the importance of ICT in the primary curriculum is to ignore
the increasing digitisation of information worldwide” (Furness
In the study of the digital literacy practices, Mclean recognizes
that there is growing recognition that youth are engaged in
multimodal ways of thinking, learning, and identity construction,
and that social media sites (Facebook, Myspace) offer their users
opportunities to engage in multimodal consumption and production of
a range of texts, including photos, videos, text comments, symbols,
and images (McLean 2010).
Home and school, offline and online worlds connect in and through
the everyday practices of young people in complex and rich ways.
Recognising the significance of such texts and practices needs to be
framed within a critical understanding of technologies and their
social and cultural meanings (Bulfin and North 2007).
Of considerable concern, however, is the issue surrounding the
teaching of literacy’s or multiliteracies. In this research project,
it became evident that the teachers saw the teaching of literacy’s
as separate from computers and other technological devices, even
though they regarded both the learning of technology and the
learning of literacy’s as important (Henderson 2011).