Continuity and Change in Literacy Practices: A Move towards Multiliteracies

In this paper we present findings from an empirical study-in-progress that investigates how a teacher integrates technology, specifically an Interactive Whiteboard (IWB), to teach multiliterate practices when reading multi-modal texts. This research was a collaboration between a teacher and a team of university-based researchers as they used ethnographic action research to make visible the teacher's espoused and enacted beliefs as to what counts as multiliteracies in her classroom during the exploratory first phase of the inquiry. Social constructionism framed our theoretical orientation and our epistemological view of knowledge. Data based on observations, field notes, reflective journal entries, videotapes and cultural artifacts were analyzed from contrastive and holistic perspectives using micro-analytic techniques to interpret ways that meanings were negotiated when reading a multi-modal text on an IWB. Results reported indicate lack of congruence between the teacher's espoused and enacted beliefs, given that her practices focused mainly on traditional print-based modes of communication. These findings will inform the teacher's action in the next phase of the study where ethnographic action research methods will guide the teacher's planning in ways that will align her espoused and enacted beliefs about multiliteracies, multimodal texts and the use of the IWB in her classroom.