Why do a great number of students have trouble writing words on the page? Is it a problem with language, underdeveloped literacy skills, or just a reluctance to write? To counter these difficulties, some educators are using the art of comic books to give young authors a creative new way to dive into literacy learning.
Although generations of kids grew up with the impression that comic books don’t make the grade with parents and teachers, comic books are gaining new-found respectability in the learning community. Increasingly popular creative programs boost kids’ literacy skills and self-esteem through the creation of their own fantasy-based characters and comic books. Kids love comic books and superheroes, and educators are exploiting the genre to teach literacy skills with material that students are fully invested in.
Arts-based literacy and learning programs such as the Comic Book Project are allowing students to create, develop, and publish their own comic books. The 12 Comics Learning Support program offers literacy services to organizations through creation of comic books and short films to support development of literacy, math, science, history, and oral communication skills. These thoughtfully designed programs are fine examples of using an art-based genre as the common tool to spark a child’s creativity while enhancing their learning potential.
Other organizations like 826NYC offer support to students with their writing skills by providing free tutoring and after school workshops in their writing center. 826NYC is also home to the Brooklyn Superhero Supply Company, where 100% of the proceeds from the sale of capes, x-ray glasses and crime fighting novelties goes directly back to funding 826NYC educational programs.
Click the image to view a short video about 826NYC hosted on MSNBC.com.
Through these new visionary programs, educators have taken notice of the vital benefits an arts-based literacy and learning program can provide. Do you think comic books and superheroes have a place in the classroom?