Last week 10 of our English Teaching Assistants, as well as two staff members, participated in a Media Literacy seminar organized by the Fulbright Commission in Czech Republic. Taylor Wichtendahl prepared a short summary of the event (thank you, Taylor!):
This year’s ETAs were provided with an excellent opportunity to attend a conference in media literacy, hosted by Fulbright Czech Republic in Prague. The event brought together ETAs from Hungary, the Czech Republic, Poland and Slovakia. Together, the ETAs attended workshops and heard from many speakers prominent in the field of media literacy. The conference was hosted at two very unique locations. The first location was the Center for Architecture and Metropolitan Planning, which attendees could take an optional tour of that allowed for exploration of their current exhibit, “Rohansky Island- New Karlin.” The second location was the National Technical Library, where ETAs were shown unique art by Dan Perjovschi and given a book of his work.
Through the weekend, ETAs took seminars highlighting the regional perspectives that the diverse showing of attendees would be immersed in for the next 9 months. One of the most invaluable pieces of the conference was the extensive offering of resources that could be incorporated in the classroom. These resources were briefly discussed in a rapid fire format and then ETAs could take a more in depth workshop on a selection of them the following day. A particularly popular resource and workshop was on Fakescape, an escape game created by six Czech students during the global P2P Digital challenge sponsored by Facebook. Fakescape is currently in the process of developing English language versions of their resources but allowed ETAs to play a paper version of the digital game. Afterwards, Fulbrighters were able to provide feedback and discuss ways to develop the program further after experiencing the game.
During the three-day conference, ETAs had the opportunity to meet fellow Fulbrighters and interact through different activities, such as a tram tour of Prague through #ARCHITRAM and a special cooking workshop with traditional Czech food. A particularly unique part of this conference was the emphasis by Fulbright Czech Republic on creating a sustainable conference. No plastic water bottles were offered, all organizations that provided catering were in support of admirable causes and fair wages, and the use of public transport was encouraged by free ride tickets for attendees.
The seminar was a wonderful opportunity for Fulbrighters to meet each other and brought many minds together to discuss media literacy in our regions and around the world. The resources, perspectives, and culture we discovered will be brought back to our classrooms in Poland and support the learning of our students!