Redesigning school spaces

Creating possibilities for learning

Authored by: Helen Nixon , Barbara Comber

The Routledge International Handbook of Creative Learning

Print publication date:  July  2011
Online publication date:  July  2011

Print ISBN: 9780415548892
eBook ISBN: 9780203817568
Adobe ISBN: 9781136730047


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The New London Group’s conceptual blueprint for a pedagogy of multiliteracies has highlighted the importance of incorporating design and multiple modes of meaning-making and representation into contemporary understandings of literacy, and has emphasised the increasing importance of screen-based and digital practices (Cope and Kalantzis, 2000; Kress, 2003; New London Group, 1996). Yet other literacy researchers have noticed the increasing differences between in- and out-of-school literacies (e.g. Hull and Schultz, 2001; Lankshear and Knobel, 2003) and have argued that students’ investment in new and popular literacies highlights the lack of relevance of what is typically on offer at school. Nevertheless, we believe that it is possible for literacy educators to work towards building a curriculum that is engaging for students and authorises their perspectives on the world around them. Such a curriculum might very well grow out of the arts or technology and design, with their emphases on visual and spatial modes of representation. But equally such a curriculum might incorporate critical approaches to the study of space and place. In this chapter we describe the possibilities afforded by collaborative crosscurriculum planning, in conjunction with place-based pedagogy, for the student production of imaginative, expansive and socially significant texts.

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