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Been a very hectic last few days, but I have a few minutes to let you all know that I’ll be at OISE/UT’s Dean’s raduate Conference this Saturday spreading the word about virtual worlds to educators.

I’ll be part of the Critical Literacies in Action panel discussion, where I’ll be presenting alongside my OISE colleagues to talk about what critical literacies looks like in and out of the classroom. For my part, I’ll be looking critically at the out of school texts of virtual worlds like Club Penguin. I’ll be asking what social messages are being reinforced or challenged by the virtual world and in what ways virtual worlds like Club Penguin can be used in the classroom.

In a way it’s distilling what I’ve said in this blog down to a 15 minute power point presentation. Yeah, it’ll be tight.

The talk is inspired by a critical reading of Club Penguin in particular and virtual worlds in general that I made a few months back for a class at OISE. You can check out the blog, Chilling at Club Peguin: How virtual worlds are redefining literacy for kids. I really threw it down in that look at CP and a lot has happened in the four months since I posted those views, so Saturday’s talk should be a bit more level-headed and optimistic. But you never know, I could wake up in a bad mood. My hopes are that a few educators will be introduced to virtual worlds and recognize the currently untapped potential for education in this new form of interactive media.

If you’re in Toronto, I invite you to drop by OISE and check us out. We’ll be going on at 10:45 am and running until 12 noon. All the conference details are here.

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