I, Pseudocoder: Reflections of a Literacy Teacher-Educator on Teaching Coding as Critical Literacy
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AbstractThis article is a commentary essay that uses the connected learning framework (Ito et al., 2013) as a lens to explore the relationship between making, coding, and critical literacy in the context of literacy teacher education. Critical literacy theorists have argued that it is important to understand the perspective and positionality of an author in order to make sense of a text in the context of history, society, and cultural norms (Alvermann, Moon, & Hagood, 1999; Gee, 1999; Jewitt, 2008). Likewise, software, written by coders, is also a form of media that requires interrogation and critical analysis. Increasingly, digital technologies have played a part in individuals’ social, political, and economic lives, yet only a small percentage of individuals can read the code that has designed this software (Rushkoff, 2010). Therefore, to foster greater civic literacy and engagement, an important aspect of literacy instruction in the digital era should include a basic understanding of the fundamentals of coding languages. However, few teacher educators have the knowledge of computer programming to integrate coding into literacy education courses and, therefore, this aspect is missing from much of current teacher education.