Worlds have collided and modes have merged: classroom evidence of changed literacy practices
Debates continue in public and in educational policy forums about the ‘basics’ of literacy while many have not recognized that these basics may never be the same again. Rapid changes in digital communication provide facilities for reading and writing to be combined with various and often quite complex aspects of music, photography and film. At the same time, educational policy and national testing requirements are still principally focused on the reading and writing of print-based texts. This paper examines evidence from classroom research to analyze the nature of multimodal literacy, the literacy that is needed in contemporary times for reading, viewing, responding to and producing multimodal and digital texts. Examples of students' engagement in multimodal literacy are presented to demonstrate how classroom literacy practices can incorporate the practices of talking, listening, reading and writing together with processing the modes of written text, image, sound and movement in print and digital texts.