Summer always makes me feel nostalgic. I often find myself thinking back on my childhood summers when the calendar seemed to expand during the months of July and August, when 10 weeks of summer vacation seemed to last as long as the other 42 weeks of the year combined. 

This picture sums up my childhood summers. That's me being held tightly by my mom on one of our vacations at the Jersey Shore with my brother and sister close by. I love this picture and the pure joy in our faces. Remember the days of jumping in a pool, cooling off and playing Marco Polo? I sure do. 

Now that I work in the education space, summer brings on a whole new meaning. Sure, there is still the feeling of days lasting longer and an overall calmer vibe. But, there is also the unbelievably long list of things I want to read, watch, and write about now that summer is here. I am sure you also have an unrealistic list of things to do while you are on summer "vacation". What's on your reading list this summer? I'd love to know. I'm especially interested in new studies out related to media literacy and books relevant to our work. Please share with me. I can then pass it along to the broader community through social media and email. 

 

One thing I know I will be spending a lot of time on this summer is preparations for the 4th Annual U.S. Media Literacy Week which is scheduled for November 5-9, 2018. I hope you recently saw our announcement about this year's Regional Chairs and our new Resource and Content Development Team

If you are interested in helping out with the efforts and/or signing up for partnership, email NAMLE's Program Associate, Nirvana Guzman, at nguzman@namle.net. 


 
We are also planning our next  Media Literacy and Civic Engagement in the Digital Age regional event which will take place on Friday, September 28, 2018 at Texas A&M. We are excited to be partnering with the Journalism Education Association, Newseum, MediaWise, and The Civic Imagination Project  on this event. If you are interested in attending, registration will launch in early August but feel free to contact us at namle@namle.net to hold a spot. 


Speaking of Texas, we have big news from NAMLE's Board President.  This August, Erin Reilly will begin her appointment as Professor of Practice and Director of Innovation & Entrepreneurship at University of Texas Austin's Moody College of Communication. Erin will teach in the areas of Media Literacy, Innovation and Entrepreneurship with her first two classes focused on Audience Development and Engagement and the Emerging Media Landscape in Children's Media. Congratulations, Erin! 


Congratulations are also in order for NAMLE's organziational partner, News-o-matic. News-o-matic received the World Association of Newspapers and News Publishers Award for "Best Innovation to Engage Youth Audiences".

The winners of this year's WAN-IFRA North American Digital Media Awards were  announced on the night of June 26 during a special ceremony at the end of the first day of  Digital Media North America  Conference in New York. News-o-matic's Editor in Chief, Russell Kahn, had this to say about the honor. " If we want to hook kids with current events and media literacy, we must be innovative with rich, multimedia engagement opportunities. This award from an international news  organization is validation of the work we've been doing - and the success we've had in getting the next generation involved with the news on a daily basis."

As part of our ongoing effort to highlight the work of the Journal of Media Literacy Education, this month we interviewed Dr. Jayne Lammers of the University of Rochester to discuss her research with Nicholas Palumbo on the accessibility of fanfiction sites for students with disabilities, which was recently published  in JMLE. Their complete article, "Barriers to Fanfiction Access: Results from a Usability Inspection of Fanfiction.net" is available in  JMLE 9.2, a special issue on media literacy and disabilities. 

Lastly, as  you know the new EU  privacy law, GDPR (General Data Protection Regulation) came into effect on May 25th. Please know we have  always cared about your privacy and we want to be completely transparent about how we use your personal data. We only ever use your personal data (your email address and/or name) to directly send you updates through our newsletters and announcements and to reach out to you about media literacy activities in your region.  We are currently seeking advice from experts and looking at our privacy policies to ensure that we are in compliance with GDPR. If you have any questions, please reach out to me. We will of course keep you informed about any changes to our privacy policy. 

I thought I'd leave you with my other favorite photo from my childhood summers. This one is taken at a park near our home in New Jersey. It's not the best picture in the world but there's something about the way my dad is holding on to me and my brother is helping that makes me happy inside. Just like summer is supposed to do.

Have a wonderful July!

Michelle Ciulla Lipkin's signature   Michelle Ciulla Lipkin
Executive Director  mciullalipkin@namle.net @ciullalipkin @medialiteracyed