Friday, April 06, 2018

#lilac18 play as transformative information literacy education

Andrew Walsh @playbrarian from university of Huddersfield began his session with a mass audience move and bubble blowing, which was very much needed stimulation at this time in the afternoon! We  played a “pass the parcel” game that got us all talking to each other. Then Andrew spoke about the nature of IL as being socially constructed, and is highly contextual, so to be Information literate in one situation is very different from what information literacy looks like in another situation. Students have to develop an idea of IL in new situations of study. Play is one social constructivist pedagogy that can be used in IL teaching. Play can be scary for grown ups, and public play is a political act. We need signals and permission to play, and many HE environments are not conducive to play, e.g. lecture theatres. It’s important to give out signals at the start of the session that it’s ok to play when taking this approach in your teaching. One big benefit of play is that we enter a different place called the “magic circle” where different rules apply and ideas can be played with in a different way, to encourage different points of view. Play is really adaptable, so even if you are playing formal games, the rules can be changed. This flexibility allows learners to adapt sessions to what they most need to know. Play is inherently social, it fosters interaction, people gravitate towards games. For example referencing can be taught as a card game, where groups make references and then decide what the rules are, and also get to define their own referencing rules.

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