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INQUIRY I, PART 1:

Autobiographical Inquiry into Literacy Learning: Narrative Analysis of Self In and


Out of School

DUE SEPTEMBER 16, 2015


(4-6 PAGES)

or this inquiry, the autobiographical inquiry, you will draw on the more
complex concept of literacy that we have been exploring in class to investigate
how the literacy events and practices you encountered as an adolescent
influenced your identities.
1. It will then be helpful to identify significant literacy events in your life as an
adolescent (middle and high school) both in and out of school.

2. Once you have identified these literacy events, you will need to articulate the
kinds of literacy frameworks that were in operation.
3. Then it will be helpful to return to your initial list of identities to consider ways
in which you used reading and writing to develop these identities within these
literacy events.
4. As you write, please work towards constructing for yourself a working
conceptual framework for identity as it is connected to literacy, language, and
learning.
5. In particular, you will want to reflect on your experiences as an adolescent in
and out of school with respect to your identity construction as a reader, writer,
researcher, peer, family, and community member.

Brainstorm memories that you have of particular classes, teachers,


interactions with communities and texts encountered in and out of school
Look through texts (books, films, magazines, photographs, etc.) that
were formative or influential during your adolescence
Find examples of your writing and other literacy artifactsletters,
schoolwork, journals or diaries, etc.
Talk with members of your family and/or friends who knew you when you
were an adolescent
Locate significant literacy events (either singular or patterned) that you
encountered that helped shape your identity/ies.

Keep these questions in mind as you reflect:

Within each literacy event, what kinds of discourses and identities as


writers, readers, learners, and people did you acquire or construct and
how?

What did you learn about yourself, other people, the world, and yourself in
relation to other people and the world through the literacy events,
frameworks, and practices you engaged in through reading, writing, and
research?
What counted as learning in the different literacy events you accessed?
In what ways did literacy frameworks and practices privilege or not
privilege your literacies, your languages, and your identities?

For your 4-6 page inquiry:


Tell one or more stories about yourself as an adolescent that explains what
kinds of literacy frameworks, events and practices you encountered and
constructed as an adolescent.
Use your story and analysis to explain your assumptions about literacy as
an adolescent and to articulate your emerging understandings of literacy.
Keep in mind inquiry both stems from and generates questions.
Questions to speak to:
1. What frameworks for literacy and writing did you encounter as an
adolescent in and out of school?
a. How did those frameworks impact you?
b. What counted as learning in your English classes?
c. What identities as a reader, writer, and person did you construct?
d. How did you conceptualize what writing was and could do for you?
2. Based on course readings, inquiry 1, and your fieldwork, how are you now
conceptualizing literacy, language acquisition, and writing?

INQUIRY I, PART 2:
Autobiographical Inquiry into Literacy Learning: Narrative Analysis of Adolescent
In and Out of School

DUE SEPTEMBER 24, 2014


(3-4 PAGES)

or this inquiry, you will complete an interview with one or more adolescents
in your site. The goal of this interview is to learn about the literacies of these
adolescents. In other words, with your interview you will explore their literacy
practices in and out of school and their assumptions about literacy. You will then
compare and contrast their literacy practices with your own and their
assumptions about literacy with your own. You will also compare their identities
with your own. Please choose to interview an adolescent you think is very
different from you in race, class, culture, religion, sexual orientation, or religion.

To begin, brainstorm a list of questions you can ask adolescents that they will
understand that will help you learn about the kinds of literacy events they have
access to, the kinds of exposure to literacy frameworks they have in those events,
and the kinds of identities as readers, writers, researchers, and people they are
constructing within those events.
To help you design your questions, think about what you are learning about
adolescent literacies and the many different real world purposes they have for
engaging in reading and writing: video games, music, computers, social
networking, social activism, profit, etc. Think about specific questions and follow
up questions you can ask them that will help you understand the many
dimensions of their reading, writing, and research lives.
For example, if you are investigating how they use the internet, questions about
sites they visit, social profiles they have formed, communities they have joined or
started, etc., it will help you delve into the many literacy practices and literacies
they are constructing during on-line literacy events. As you learn about their
literacy practices, see if you can understand the central literacy events that are
shaping their identities. For example, was there a time when they were bullied on
line? Was there a time when they risked writing something that they really
wanted others to hear? Please think of questions like these to zoom in on how
they are using literacy (reading, writing, and research) to form specific identities
within specific contexts.
Once you have learned the range of literacy events and practices the adolescents
have encountered, please reflect on what kinds of identities (as readers, writers,
researchers, language users, people) they have been constructing in different
social contexts and how the specific literacy frameworks in those contexts have
influenced those identities. Please compare and contrast these identities with
your own.

Then, please return to reflect once again on what you are learning about the
relationships among literacy, language acquisition, learning, and identity. Please
also re-answer this question: in what ways do the literacy frameworks and
practices this adolescent(s) is encountering privilege or not privilege his or her
literacies, languages, and identities?
For your 3-4 page inquiry:
Tell one or more stories about the adolescent(s) that explains what kinds
of literacy frameworks, events and practices he or she encountered and
constructed as an adolescent.
Use your story and analysis to explain his or her assumptions about
literacy.
Use your story and analysis to explain the identities the adolescent(s) has
constructed within specific social contexts because of the literacy events,
frameworks at play and through his or her literacy practices.
Compare and contrast this adolescents literacies and assumptions about
literacy to your own.
Compare and contrast this adolescents identities as a reader, writer,
researcher, and person to your own.
Keep in mind inquiry both stems from and generates questions.
Questions to speak to:
1. What frameworks for literacy has this adolescent(s) encountered?
2. What kinds of language learning has this adolescent(s) pursued?
3. What are this adolescents assumptions about literacy?
4. What are this adolescents assumptions about his or her identity options?
5. What is this adolescent(s) learning about him or herself, his or her identity
options, and his or her agency in and out of school?
6. What is this adolescent learning about texts, writing, language, other
people, and the world?
7. How do this adolescents assumptions about literacy compare to yours?
8. How do this adolescents identities compare to yours?