Making Curriculum Pop

Graphic Novels, Movies, and Recap of Media Literacy at Comic Con

Just a quick potpourri here to let everyone know what I'm up to; I'm really heartened by all the graphic novel and film folks here -- as well as all the great resources that Ryan and others keep posting.

1. First, I have a new piece in Screen Education magazine that's for primary and middle level educators: "Using Genre as a Springboard: A New Approach to Critical Analysis." If you're unfamiliar with this magazine, it's absolutely amazing -- wish we had something like it in the U.S. ( Many thanks to Frank Baker, who has also written for SE, for really bringing this resource to my attention.

2. New York Comic Con... wow, really surprised me how many people showed up to hear about a critical approach to studying superheroes across media -- and was so happy to let many of these folks know about media literacy education for what was clearly the first time. Kind of strange and subversive to run this workshop at Comic Con, a fact that School Library Journal has commented on, but I am very grateful for the opportunity. I wish that NAMLE and other organizations actually had more of a presence at, or made in-roads into, the actual pop culture world like this, but they do not seem that interested in the possibilities. Or am I wrong about this... or just foolishly generalizing? Let me know.

Anyway, I'm hoping to bring part of this presentation to the NCTE media gallery with Katie Monnin, and look forward to getting more feedback there from those who work in this area.

3. I'm also putting together both an educator workshop and a live Readers' Theatre for Kids Comic Con in April featuring the work of one of my favorite clients, Toon Books. So if any of you are at all near the New York area, please consider coming by and supporting this event -- admission is only $5. More info here:

4. Soon after, in early May, I'll be speaking on graphic novels to the joint annual conference of the Massachusetts Library and School Library Association. So if you're based in MA, please let me know. My talk here is of the most general kind -- on all of the educational goals that can be accomplished with graphica. (I know, good luck covering this in about an hour.)

All right, that's all for now. I post this sort of stuff partly for self-promotion and to share ideas/events/venues with folks, but also largely out of the hope that I can actually meet some of the interesting people in this Ning face to face at some point, not just online.

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Comment by Megan Lucas on May 3, 2009 at 2:12pm
Hi Peter,
I have never been to Comic Con, but I have many friends who have told me all about it. This weekend I went to the Japanese cherry blossom festival at the Brooklyn Botanical Gardens. I was amazed by the large number of attendees dressed like their favorite anime characters! Nearly half of the events that day were related to anime and Manga as well. I went to the same festival only two years ago and I only recall seeing events related to the more "traditional" Japanese art forms. I think it's great that the festival has recognized all the many forms of art that are now part of this culture and it appeared that there was an amazing turn out of others who share an interest in these art forms.
Comment by Lisa Fink on March 9, 2009 at 10:55am
Peter - I was glad to see you submitted a proposal to NCTE. I work at NCTE on Would you be interested in writing up some of your ideas as lesson plans? Let me know and we can chat more!
Comment by Peter Gutierrez on February 27, 2009 at 3:26pm
Thanks, Jen!

Oh, and I forgot to mention that New York Comic Con will be moved to a new permanent time -- October -- starting in 2010. Don't know if that will make it easier or harder for folks to attend.
Comment by Jen Powers on February 27, 2009 at 2:58pm
Fabulous stuff, Peter! Wish I could have been at Comic Con fer sher. In the meantime, thanks for the above resources.


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