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Practices of visual communication in a primary school classroom: Digital image collection as a potential semiotic mode
Stockholm University, Faculty of Humanities, Department of Swedish Language and Multilingualism, Scandinavian Languages.
2014 (English)In: Classroom Discourse, ISSN 1946-3022, Vol. 5, no 1, 22-37 p.Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

One-to-onecomputing projects in which learners work with individual laptops or tablets across subjects are rapidly increasing in number. One aspect of this is that as the laptops give access to the Internet; digital images and texts – potentially from all over the globe move into the classroom in an unprecedented manner. The paper presents an analysis of specific classroom practices involving seven- to eight-year-olds: the collecting of digital images and their use as semiotic resources in the creation of multimodal texts. The aim is to describe the childrens digital image collections as more or less mode-like that is, as a more or less systematically organised set of resources for making meaning. The methodology is described as social semiotic ethnography, combining semiotic analysis of images and texts with ethnographic understandings of the personal histories and interests of participants. The paper concludes that there are obvious practices in the classroom in which the children use their image collections in a mode-like way, such as categorising images according to semantic criteria, using them for display of identities in the classroom and systematically using them when designing multimodal texts, expressing both simple denotational meanings and more complex connotational semiotic potentials. Another conclusion is that the childrens image collections have untapped learning potentials, for example regarding critical reflections on how images create meaning, which could form the foundation for concrete learning activities in the classroom.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
London: Taylor & Francis, 2014. Vol. 5, no 1, 22-37 p.
Keyword [en]
digital image banks; collecting; digitalisation; multimodality; ‘one-to-one’ computing; semiotic mode; semiotic resources; visual communication; young children
National Category
Specific Languages
Research subject
Scandinavian Languages
URN: urn:nbn:se:su:diva-98258DOI: 10.1080/19463014.2013.859845OAI: diva2:683307
Separate worlds? Text activities at home as a resource for learning in school
Swedish Research Council, 721-2007-3645
Available from: 2014-01-03 Created: 2014-01-03 Last updated: 2014-06-24Bibliographically approved

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