Memes in the Classroom
Whether you know what a meme is or not, you have almost certainly seen one. A meme is an element of culture or a popular behavior that is passed from one individual to another via images or videos, usually accompanied by a piece of text. These images and videos are often reproduced with slight variations and propagated by way of the Internet.
Teachers have even started using popular social media phenomenon including memes in the classroom to keep their students engaged as well as encouraging students to create their own memes and videos. Dr. Alec Couros, a professor of educational technology and media at the Faculty of Education, University of Regina, shares his idea that, “Creating such joyful events at school are vitally important for an overall healthy learning environment. Combine this with complex, project-based work that seamlessly integrates new literacies through media development and your institution has just made great strides toward the development and modelling of a positive digital footprint (for the institution and for the individuals involved). And these sorts of activities can go a long way to ease some of unwarranted fears regarding social media felt amongst parents, teachers, administrators and students.”
How can you get in on the action? If you are a teacher, homeschooling parent, or K12 learning coach, try integrating memes into lesson plans to help engage students. By recognizing popular Internet culture, students will be likely to remember the text and lessons that accompany such images.
If you are a student, why not create your own memes as studying tools?
If you are thinking about using memes in the classroom (or already do), why not practice by participating in Learning Liftoff’s effort to turn Darth Pug into the Internet’s favorite meme? Download the image of Darth Pug and create your own meme using tools such as ImgFlip. Share your ideas in the comments below or share your meme on social media using #DarthPug. Our favorite submissions will be shared on the Learning Liftoff Facebook page as well as K12’s Facebook page.
Submit your Meme suggestions below, download the image and create one yourself, or use an online meme generator like ImgFlip. Be sure to share it with us #DarthPug
Sarah Mills is a contributing writer for Learning Liftoff. She mentored and instructed kindergarten through high school-aged students throughout her college years and eventually went on to live and work in Yosemite National Park for a stint. Reading, writing, adventuring, and anything Harry Potter are some of Sarah’s favorite go-to activities.