Literacy is More Than Ability to Read and Write

Reading the article “What Video Games Have to Teach Us about Learning and Literacy” of James Paul Gee I get an idea of how I may become broad-minded person and succeed. If you also want to understand how you can change the way you are looking at different things, you should read this article. Today I will share with opportunities this article opens to people and threatens at the same time.
Before starting, let me first tell you concisely what the author is actually talking about at the article. Gee is writing about literacy and how it could be defined. He says that literacy shouldn’t be considered as the only ability to read and write. Nowadays world requires broader understanding of the word “literacy”. Children also need to learn how to understand meanings of paintings, videogames, videos, movies, and other things which relate to different parts of our lives. Finally, the author uses many examples of videogames to explain a new way people may perceive things to be effective and critical learners.
Effective and critical learning is fundamental for understanding how we can connect things which are absolutely different. The author mentions that videogames can teach us how to learn to identify strategies and concepts. This process includes active and critical learning. Gee also admits that videogames might lead to mechanical representation of the same strategy to win the game. However, he doesn’t tell how dangerous it could be.
Many videogames which have violent content earned bad reputation for videogames generally. Therefore, many adults forbid their children to play videogames. However, Gee wants to show another side of the coin, looking at video games from different perspective.  In my point of view, when the author explains his main points, he also may change people’s perception of videogames. The author’s audience might think that videogames are perfectly helpful tools to play how to learn actively and critically. But parents and young people should remember that many video games contain violent content and don’t allow a kid to use different strategies when he/she starts the game again. Therefore, take into account tools of active and critical learning but understand how negatively playing videogames may affect your children, friends, or you. Thereby, I agree with Gee with his thought about literacy and I would try to use these concepts for personal development. Try too.



Have you ever thought that texting, writing a post, or sending email is a part of rhetoric?

These everyday actions in our lives seem so evident but few of us were really thinking about them from scientific point of view. I realized that when I read the first chapter of Ian Bogost’s paper “Persuasive Games: The Expressive Power of Videogames”. Bogost shares with interesting thoughts of the history of rhetoric, main principles and tactics of rhetoric, and types of rhetoric such as procedural rhetoric, visual rhetoric, and digital rhetoric. Reading many pages of the paper I got two different things to share with you. The first is my understanding of types of rhetoric and why we should learn and understand them. The second is that I would like to admit now I am not a big fan of reading scientific texts.

I think Bogost shows evolution of rhetoric at his paper, beginning from philosophers of ancient Greece to nowadays.  From times of Socrates and Aristotle rhetoric has been evolving, creating new types of rhetoric. According to the author such types of rhetoric as procedural rhetoric, visual rhetoric, and digital rhetoric are all about people and how they think rather than only about computers.

Technologies play an important role in changes of types of rhetoric. For example, pictures and other art collections are a part of visual rhetoric. Additionally, our emails, texting, blogs, chats, and many other things are a part of digital rhetoric. Just imagine that digital rhetoric didn’t exist even two centuries ago. But now we have a privilege to communicate through the Internet. Another question is that do we always benefit from that? When I have read the chapter I realize how much modern generation looses when we use Facebook, Twitter, or LinkedIn to communicate rather than hanging out or talk for business with our friends or colleagues. However, it is modern reality. If we want to be successful anywhere, even on Facebook, we should learn and understand how all types of rhetoric are working and developing.

In addition to my emotional response, I would like to share with my opinion about the text in general. Structurally this text is excellent because it has background, explanation, reasoning, qualifiers, and the rest of rhetorical staff. However, for me this text was very hard to read and understand because the author uses scientific language and excessive explanation of things which were mentioned couple of times. Therefore, I was really confused with all connections between procedural rhetoric and differences between persuasive and serious games. As a result, I didn’t catch the whole idea but I could understand a little about rhetoric and its types in general.


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