July 4, 2008
Six catechists representing three dioceses were certified June 22 as Master Teachers in Media Literacy at the Pauline Center for Media Studies in Culver City.
Three of the catechists were from the Archdiocese of Los Angeles, two from the Diocese of Orange, and one, Judy McMillan, is a Catholic school teacher from San Diego. The certificate is recognized by the Archdiocese of Los Angeles’ Department of Catholic Schools and Office of Religious Education for continuing education and recertification.
“For me,” said Carmen Maldonado, the Director of Religious Education for St. Anthony’s Parish in El Segundo, “the curriculum was the most positive aspect of the course. The information was very useful and practical. The fact that we had the opportunity to put what we learned into practice forced me to focus more on the media I choose to watch.”
In addition to classes on popular culture, advertising, the Internet, and the history of film, “we spend an ample amount of time on the theory and practice of media literacy as an essential set of life skills for believers today,” explained Sister Rose Pacatte, a Daughter of St. Paul and director of the Pauline Center for Media Studies. “Media literacy, or media mindfulness as we like to call it in the faith community, is an educational imperative for citizens in the 21st century.”
Relgious of the Sacred Heart of Mary Gretchen Hailer, a program instructor, said she is “heartened to see the increase in interest in media literacy and the capacity of our catechists to integrate it into their ministry.” Sisters Hailer and Pacatte co-authored the award-winning resource guide, Media Mindfulness: Educating Teens about Faith and Media (St. Mary’s Press, 2007) and recently submitted Our Media World: Teaching Kids K-8 about Faith and Media to Pauline Books & Media for a 2009 release.
The 2008-2009 Master Teacher in Media Literacy Certificate course will begin on Saturday, September 20, 2008. The complete syllabus and registration form is online at www.PaulineCMS.org. Tuition is $310.00 and covers all materials. The deadline for registration is September 10. An identical course in Spanish, for Spanish-speaking catechists and teachers, is in development. For more information, contact Sister Pacatte at firstname.lastname@example.org.