Media Education of Children and Youth as a Path to Media Literacy

This study focuses on the issue of media education of children as a part of media literacy, offering an overview of the current theoretical framework related to the given topic and an analysis of various research findings presented by renowned scholars in Slovakia and abroad. The author also offers results of her own research which aimed to obtain necessary information on the topic, to analyse and evaluate media, traditional as well as the new media, as a part of free time activities of primary school children in Slovakia. This research, supported by findings of other researches, shows that television and the Internet are dominant within media which are used by primary school children for gathering information. From the point of view of personal communication with friends and family, it can be said that the face to face communication is in many situations replaced by telephone calls or text messages. Further on, the study aims to find out about how pupils identify with different types of media and its contents. The last part of the text deals with different approaches to media education of the countries in the European Union, which served as a basis for developing the idea of media education in Slovakia. In the last part of the study, the author deals with media education as such and as an essential part of school curriculum, further on, analysing approaches of media education in other EU countries and describing the actual situation in Slovakia. The article thus shows how the media education contents in primary education could be updated so they fit recent trends and the current ‘media’ age. 

curriculum, European Union, media education, new literacy, Slovakia, social networks