On May 15, 2019, long before COVID-19 took the conference world digital; I was sitting in an office thinking about the Master's Capstone project I needed to complete to earn my M.Ed. in Curriculum and Teaching. I wanted to pick a project that could have a real impact. While studying education, I became passionate about critical pedagogy and access to education, so after seeing The Public Archeology and PressED Twitter conferences, I came up with this project, The Popular Culture and Pedagogy: Twitter Conference.
The intent was to join The Public Archeology and PressED in challenging the conference status quo in terms of communication, diversity, and inclusivity. So why popular culture? Because it can break down cultural, socioeconomic, and language barriers when we create a space to ask how we can use this tool in our teaching, it deepens the critical pedagogy component at the heart of the Twitter conference movement. The hope was for it to allow for practical guides and discussion to form so that educators of all grade levels may reach the students many think are unreachable. I think it is safe to say it did that.
Although the capstone project, was what I hoped would be the first of many, once the #POPC2 call for papers came around educators were burnt out by COVID-19 and submissions were too low to put together a full conference.
The Call for Papers
Below are some of the presentions from the conference. The threads were all captured via the Thread Reader App and then saved to PDF format. All accounts and threads were public when these were captured (and as of posting on July 29th, 2021 are still public). The presentations from scholars whose Twitter accounts are not public or were deleted while attempting to the archive have not had their presentations preserved. This is arguably a limit of this conference format and its potential for long-term dialogue. Going forward I would recommend that presentations are submitted via a google doc for preservation purposes and to aid in effectively tracking engagement data collection.
Irwin - Keynote Address: Pop Cultural Literacy
Follow them at https://twitter.com/williamirwin38
LaFollette - Pop Culture in/as Arts-Based Writing Pedagogy
Follow them at https://twitter.com/k_lafollette03
Jensen - Using Reality TV As A Tool For Engagement in English classes
Follow them at https://twitter.com/readteachswim
Largent -Teaching Research Methods Through Popular Culture
Follow them at https://twitter.com/JuliaLargent
Contois - Taking Food Media Public as Pop Culture Pedagogy
Follow them at https://twitter.com/EmilyContois
Larsen - Walkers Ate My Science Homework: A First Year Student Seminar Course on Science and “The Walking Dead”
Follow them at https://twitter.com/astro_chick
Richter - #HashtagHorror: Black Mirror, Shaming Culture, and Ethics in the Social Media Classroom
Follow them at https://twitter.com/Richter_Rhetor
Flyte - Beyond the Bio: Seeking out a New Way to Connect Generations
Follow them at https://twitter.com/hbflyte