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General directions for zine folding, page order, and orientation. 

General directions for zine folding, page order, and orientation. 

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Fostering science literacy by engaging students as active participants and communicators of scientific ideas can enhance learning as well as a sense of personal investment. Science “zine” projects can be an effective way to structure this kind of participatory science literacy and flexibly build on specific course content as well as skills in the r...

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... isn’t an exaggeration to say that most of the crucial and contentious scientific issues of Zines are today, ranging from new biotechnologies to global sustainability, are intimately biological other in nature. We find ourselves swimming in a myriad of media that offer to educate us on booklet, such topics – textbooks, magazines, nutrition labels, Web sites, and word-of-mouth provide plentiful information. Given the variety and they are varying quality of the information in circula- tion, the need to foster scientific literacy and critical discernment in students has never been more apparent. and However, if scientific literacy focuses solely on the role of students as critical media consumers , there is a risk that they will fall prey to the fairly common form of skepticism that considers no information fundamentally reli- able. A consumption focus can paradoxically exacerbate a sense of being overwhelmed by just how much (often conflicting) information there is to navigate, which can make ignorance seem like a blissful alternative. If, however, students move beyond being simply consumers of scientific knowledge and recognize the possibilities and responsibilities of being producers as well, they can become more engaged in the wider ecology of information that they are inevitably a part of. Designing cur- ricula that actively nurture students in this way can be thought of as a form of “participatory literacy” (Jurmo, 1993) that enables not only greater engagement but also better learning outcomes. These ideas are well recognized in general art and humanities education (Jenkins, 2006), but science pedagogy has yet to explore them fully, especially consid- ering the growing relevance of media in the public understanding as well as the practice of science. The use of science “zine” projects is one way to engage participatory science literacy and foster a greater sense of participatory cul- ture. Zines are much like any other small pamphlet or booklet, the important difference being that they are independent, noncommercial, and self-made, which allows them to be easily and inexpensively reproduced and distributed. Zines can combine personal and aca- demic engagement with public outreach, activating students’ curiosity toward research, reflection, and articulation of a topic to serve a wider audience. like any Indeed, zines can build upon specific course content while also helping students or develop core skills of critically evaluating the quality of the information from various sources, reflecting on the intellectual and social signifi- cance of a topic, and thinking carefully about that how concepts can be communicated to others in a way that is compelling and understand- able, but also scientifically sound. As any science educator knows, this is no easy task, but zines provide just such an opportunity for students to be educators in their own right. Having to consider how to share scientific knowledge with others through the platform of booklet zines can deepen students’ knowledge of a topic while giving them a greater sense of personal agency in engaging with science as nonspecialists. In a world where scientific knowledge is increasingly complex and technical, the participatory literacy of zines can foster a sense of owner- ship that is often lacking for those who don’t have the chance to study science formally or at an advanced level, or who had a bad experience with science learning in their educational past. By giving students a chance to be media producers and educators, a zine project can make their role and responsibility in the ecology of scientific information more apparent and potentially more rewarding. As a form of active learning, it also extends what they learn beyond the confines of the lab report, research paper, or test and into the broader community. Once the zines are finished, the students can photocopy them from their one-sheet format into simple, handy, and inexpensive booklets that can be shared easily. Ideally, such zines are artistic as well as educational. Students can mix playfulness with inquiry and personally craft an understanding of science they feel proud to share. The only necessary material is standard 8.5- by 11-inch paper. One sheet of paper can be folded and cut to create a small eight-page booklet, as shown in Figure 1. One thing important to note is the unique page order and orientation that results from this folding method. There are other formats for creating and folding zines, and teachers and students can use whatever layouts and designs seem most useful to their project. The format shown here is convenient because it allows a standard-sized sheet of paper to be used to create eight distinct pages on which information can be broken into parts or a narrative can be built. The students can draw with whatever pens, pencils, or other implements they choose, keeping in mind that the quality of any photocopies that result will vary depending on how high-contrast the text and image are. Students can be given the option to draw and write by hand, use images cut and collaged from other sources, employ a word processing program, or combine any of these techniques. One key advantage of zines is the freedom they gives students in choosing a topic and the format they think will be best to communicate it. For example, the instructor can set a general theme such as biotech- nology, genetics, or sustainability, and within that theme the students can select the specific topics they want to explore in more depth. Likewise, the instructor has the option to open or limit the possible forms of the zines as they see fit. Because the use of humor is such an effective com- municative strategy, they can take the form not only of comics, but also of instructional pamphlets, faux sales flyers, classified ads, or any number of different forms while still utilizing the eight-page zine format. A zine project can take anywhere from a day to several weeks, depending on how much time and attention you want the students to invest in it. There is no set format for undertaking a zine project, but I suggest using a sequence of steps to guide the process: a topic proposal, background research and media analysis, drafts of the written and visual script, and sufficient time for producing a finished and distributable zine. Below are several primary questions that are useful for students to consider as starting points in making a zine. What topic will make a good zine? Whatever specific topic you choose, make sure it is one that you are interested in and personally curious about. Do research to find useful and credible scientific information as well as imagery that can communicate the scientific ideas. Coming up with a list of three or four topics and comparing them on the basis of background information available and the complexity of communicating the ideas can be of great help in the early stages. Who will read your zine? Who is your ideal audience? Depending on this, you may want to choose a topic you think they will both be interested in and be able to understand. If you want your six-year-old sister to understand your zine, you will need to use words and images she can understand. If you want both kids and adults to find your zine interesting and learn something from it, you will need to think carefully about words and images that can interest and communicate to both. You can’t please or reach every reader, but in imagining who might read your zine and what experience you want them to have, the best design becomes clear. an interesting title? Think about making it a comic or including intriguing characters that can help tell the story of your scientific idea. Humor is of course a great tool for engaging your reader as you communicate, realizing it is possible to be silly as well as serious at the same time. Use compelling and clear visual images along with text (your own drawings or clip art, etc.). Finally, a zine is only as good as its final design: correct spelling, clear lettering, and correct grammar are all important for reaching others. Assessment of zine projects in the context of a course curriculum can also be done in many ways. If the project is structured in specific steps, with a proposal, research brief, and various drafts, this provides a natural means for evaluating whether students are developing a deeper engagement and a more sophisticated understanding of their topic. Such an assessment should not only include the quality of the content from a factual or scientific point-of-view, but also evaluation of what strategies were employed by students for successfully communicating the core ideas to others. With zines, peer assessment can be very effective and used as part of the educational strategy, since peers not only likely know the general topic to a similar depth, but also, as co-participants in zine-making themselves, have a good sense of the challenges and options in creating them. Indeed, zine projects and their format can easily be tailored for group work and collaborative learning. Finally, one qualitative assessment for the usefulness of zine projects in science education was the response garnered from an event held last year, the “Year of Science 2009 Zine-a-thon” (see . org/about/zine-contest.html, and ...

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... These roots in civic engagement, critical analysis and personalisation have produced a powerful reflective tool which allows learners to represent themselves and construct meaning through multiple visual and textual means (Guzzetti and Gamboa, 2004;Poletti, 2005). As zine creators, the medium positions learners not as consumers of knowledge, but as critics, creators, and crucially, experts in their own communities of knowledge (Yang, 2010;Desyllas and Sinclair, 2014). With pen and paper, anyone can become a zinester (someone who makes zines). ...
... A number of science communicators and educators have also experimented with this medium (Dunwoody, 1992;Yang, 2010;ScienceGrrl, 2018;Liu, 2019) encouraged his biology students to go beyond consuming scientific knowledge, by creating zines which invited critical responses and reimaginings of scientific concepts and phenomena. This kind of participatory literacy encourages learners to take possession of knowledge and find new ways to explore, explain and apply these ideas. ...
... This kind of participatory literacy encourages learners to take possession of knowledge and find new ways to explore, explain and apply these ideas. "In a world where scientific knowledge is increasingly complex and technical, the participatory literacy of zines can foster a sense of ownership that is often lacking for those who don't have the chance to study science formally or at an advanced level, or who had a bad experience with science learning in their educational past" (Yang, 2010). ...
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This paper presents a unique method for documenting and reflecting learning in interdisciplinary science learning settings, which prioritises the perspectives of marginalised learners and which may be used across cultural contexts. Short for “magazine” or “fanzine,” zines are small DIY booklets which can contain poetry, narrative, drawings, comics, collage and more. Often associated with radical or alternative cultures, they can become a kind of self-made soapbox for the creator, a material artifact that, by its very deconstructed and deconstructing nature, encourages a personalised remixing of ideas. Within this paper, we examine the practical and pedagogical positioning of zines within a STEAM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts, and Mathematics) context. As both a visual and text-based artifact, a zine is uniquely capable of capturing broad responses to diverse learning experiences which blur disciplinary boundaries and offers an inclusive and firmly emancipatory approach to reflective practice.
... Aspects of the learning environment identified as supporting confidence, illustrated in Table 9 below, referenced (a) an instructional style, pace, and delivery that made content accessible and digestible; (b) approaches that made meaningful connections to "real life" issues that had relevance and significance for the students in terms of, for example, social justice, public policy, or personal health and well-being; (c) use of diverse class materials and activities, including "zines" (see, for example, Yang, 2010), video demonstrations, documentaries, labs, in-class discussions, guest speakers, and field trips; (d) engaging assignments, including regular writing and reading response activities, presentations, and projects; (e) the teacher; and (f) a positive and inclusive class climate. The pattern of these self-reported sources of efficacy confirmed both the importance of mastery experiences in supporting students' confidence (Usher & Pajares, 2009) and the significance of active, personally meaningful teaching in encouraging science self-efficacy and student engagement. ...
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... A small number of papers are available on zines 'in the classroom'the university classroom with adults -as a way to explore specific concepts (see Desylass and Sinclair 2014). There is also a significant body of work on zine-making and reading as literacy practice (Buchanan 2012;Finders 1996;Lymn 2018;Yang 2010;Williams 2006) or literature (Marshall et al 2017). Only a tiny, but important, handful of works look at the process of making zines, for example in art therapy to craft 'anti-memoirs' (Houpt et al 2016) and to increase girls' media literacy through zine-making (Moscowitz and Carpenter, 2014) and to engage participants with learning disabilities in zine-making in curation and self-advocacy (French 2017). ...
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To cite this paper: Ptolomey, A., 2019. 'Developing zine-making as feminist participatory research method to generate new knowledge about disabled girlhoods'.
... In Klein's (2010) analysis, she found that students displayed both forms of reflection depending on the context. Yang (2010) utilized the medium for participatory literacy to better engage students on the topic of science; he wrote "zines can combine personal and academic engagement with public outreach, activating students' curiosity toward research, reflection, and articulation of a topic to serve a wider audience" (573). Yang used the medium to teach students science content by allowing them to become creators of the information. ...
... Carrington and Selva (2010) presented the need for facilitation, prompts and scaffolding to properly engage students in a meaningful reflection. Yang (2010) outlined unique prompts that shift the focus to the reader experience; questions such as "Why will people read your zine?" (p. 575). ...
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