Accepted students were invited to attend a virtual class on Media Literacy taught by Meredith Alford ’01, History and IB Global Politics teacher, and Scott Seraydarian ’90, Film teacher. Media Literacy and Production, a new cross-discipline course at George School, is framed around the query: How can I use media to improve the world in which I live? To explore this query, students learn how to produce their own media through a series of projects that demonstrate how media can be used as a tool that produces greater empathy, compassion, and justice in our world. (You can watch the short class introduction here.)
Scott explains Media Literacy as the “framework that allows people to access, to critically evaluate, and ultimately to manipulate or create media.” The class teaches students to ask important questions when engaging with media. Who made this media and why? What does this media want me to feel or do? What methods or techniques are being used to achieve these goals?
“Research shows teenagers spend on average nine hours a day engaging with media,” Meredith shared. “We want to equip them with tools to engage with that media meaningfully.”
Accepted students were invited to tackle a first assignment to build a photo essay. Meredith and Scott asked students to send three photos that reflect their authentic self and their core values. Meredith and Scott hope that through this assignment, students would learn about the power of media as a tool for self-expression and connection with others.
One of the students who took on the challenge was Flora Kim who created an essay around the topic of community. Meredith and Scott were very impressed with her essay.
“Your photos are very well-composed. We both noted the consistency of the green grass among all three images, which helps to make it feel like a single, cohesive narrative,” they said. “And while there is this consistent visual theme, we also appreciate the variety in your images, which presents a multidimensional identity through both people you care about and a hobby that connects you to others… This is exactly what we had in mind–well done!”
The class continued with an interactive, online segment on Tuesday, April 21, 2020. Watch that discussion here.