What is Journalistic Learning?

A Systematic Approach

Journalistic Learning (JL) is a systematic approach to empowering students. It challenges them to read and write collaboratively about subjects aligned with their existing interests.
Journalistic Learning directly and unconditionally empowers students to learn based on the active and strategic pursuit of their own interests, not to regurgitate course content on demand.
Journalistic Learning gives students a Voice. It respects and supports that Voice by empowering young people to share their perspectives with one another and with their communities in a real world context.
Journalistic Learning fundamentally shifts the focus and orientation of learning from the teacher to the student to build and strengthen fundamental life skills necessary for success and fulfillment.

Student-Driven Learning

Journalistic Learning is student-driven learning, a powerful approach that allows young people to take ownership of their education by creating and publishing peer-directed media projects.

When students are guided to learn from their personal passions and interests rather than suppressed by “test-based” tedium, they emerge as confident critical thinkers and effective communicators.
Traditional education seeks to prepare students for the next “rung of the ladder” – an alleged pathway to academic success based on the premise they will amass a body of knowledge that will serve them at some point in the future. This standard approach is insufficient in an increasingly data-rich, on-demand, and high speed competitive world.

Redefining Classroom Literacy

The Journalistic Learning Initiative (JLI) seeks to redefine literacy in the classroom by embracing reading and writing not as an academic goal to be tested, but as a dimensional philosophy and lifeskill that includes effective communication of information and ideas to others through intentional use of technology and student-initiated learning.
When students are encouraged to explore their intrinsic interests, it validates their lived experiences. They discover unforeseen connections with the world around them, and emerge as self-determined, resilient, and intellectually curious learners with tangible skills they can deploy now.
The Journalistic Learning Initiative was formed by a team of distinguished educators with vast experience in curriculum development.
WHAT WE BELIEVE
How you learn is just as important as what you learn.
WHAT WE BELIEVE
The context of learning is just as important and valuable as the content of learning.
WHAT WE BELIEVE
Collaborative learning and creation is more valuable than the individual learning and creation.
WHAT WE BELIEVE
Student accountability to one another, one’s school, and one’s community is just as important as being accountable to one’s teacher.
Advice For Aspiring Communicators
“The most important job of childhood and adolescence is to learn attachment to and trust in other people. That happens through human attention, presence, and conversation. When we think about putting children in the care of robots, we forget that what children really need to learn is that adults are there for them in a stable and consistent way.”
– SHERRY TURKLE, PROFESSOR OF THE SOCIAL STUDIES OF SCIENCE AND TECHNOLOGY, MIT
“This is our nick of time and our line to toe: to acknowledge the unintended consequences of technologies to which we are vulnerable, to respect the resilience that has always been ours. We have time to make the corrections. And to remember who we are—creatures of history, of deep psychology, of complex relationships. Of conversations artless, risky, and face-to-face.”
– SHERRY TURKLE, PROFESSOR OF THE SOCIAL STUDIES OF SCIENCE AND TECHNOLOGY, MIT
“Children need to learn what complex human feelings and human ambivalence look like. And they need other people to respond to their own expressions of that complexity. These are the most precious things that people give to children in conversation as they grow up. No robot has these things to teach.”
– SHERRY TURKLE, PROFESSOR OF THE SOCIAL STUDIES OF SCIENCE AND TECHNOLOGY, MIT