Literacy and Numeracy in the Humanities Literacy and numeracy are the fundament linguistics and numericunderstanding and skills that underpin all subjects. There is a trend toward explicitly teaching literacy skills with Humanities content. Thus, an understanding of literacy is very important. What some people might not consider is that numeracy is also very important in humanitiesLiteracy – ability to read andwrite in a way that is appropriate for thecontext.It’s important to expose children to booksand get them motivated to read. This willhelp them with reading and writing lateron.Multiliteracies – the variety of types oflanguage we need to master to be literatein our society. This includes being multimedia literate.Example: Year 7 Fairy TalesIn order to compare traditional fairy tales students were asked to read several original fairy tales.They were then shown adaptations in media book, movie and other forms to help them to developtheir analysis skills of cultural stories in English with regard to traditional literacy and newertechnological forms of literacy.How people use and understand texts1. Code breakers – combine knowledge with writing, spelling, grammar and other skills2. Participants – apply knowledge of culture to make meaning.3. Users – recognize and use genres of texts for different purposes. (Function)4. Analysis – read between the lines to judge the authors’ point of view, which is important forjudging the legitimacy of texts later on.In humanities, text analysis and other skills that are integrated into units that addresses subjectsrelating to humanities.
Classroom Implications - Read a variety of texts daily to develop listening comprehension, vocabulary, knowledge and enjoyment - Interactive reading: predicting, discussing and retelling - Breakdown the individuals sounds - Go over new words and their meanings - Encourage students to think about what they read and develop responses to questions - Teach systematic spelling to improve reading and writing. - Teach syntactic (rule/grammar) awareness - Include plenty of oral language activities, especially for ESL students - Integrate literacy across the curriculum I do this!Numeracy – ability to use mathematics effectively and with confidence in a range ofcontexts.Often associated with maths and science, but numeracy can be very important in humanities.Consider statistics. Often historical, geography, economics and other subjects rely on statistics forto stress significant of the subject being studied.Frequently students that study humanities, do not really like maths and shy away from it. The factthe matter is that maths, science and humanities are just perspectives of the whole picture. In orderto comprehend the full picture, one must remove the artificial barriers that separate numeracy fromhumanities.The challenge is to find non-traditional ways to present this statistics. ICT can very useful for this.Consider presenting statistics as visuals. Examples: What the World Eats: A photo essay http://www.time.com/time/photogallery/0,29 307,1626519,00.html Parties: Do They Cut It? (The budget deficit, that is) http://www.flickr.com/photos/25541021@N 00/4565272167/ Wolfram Alpha http://www.wolframalpha.com/