"Should we draw first?": Transmediation and small group discussions in creating collaborative responses to literature
Tochelli-Ward, Andrea Lynn
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The purpose of this collective case study was to examine eighth graders processes of transmediation as they developed a collaborative response to literature. Framing this study are social semiotics multimodality, transmediation, and sociocultural theories. The research questions were: (1) What levels of thinking (i.e., literal, metaphoric) were present in student symbol selection in a collaborative response to literature? (2) What patterns of verbal interaction (i.e., individual, consensual, responsive, elaborative) occurred within collaborative discussions as students engaged in transmediation? And (3) What patterns of types of talk (i.e., disputational, cumulative, exploratory) occurred within collaborative discussions as students engaged in transmediation? Focal participants were nine students reading at or above grade level and worked in two groups. Qualitative methods were used to deductively and inductively analyze: (a) student interviews regarding response to literature; (b) student products; and (c) discourse within small group work to create the collaborative response to literature. Within the two groups, the students created roles for themselves, which impacted how they engaged with one another and the collaborative response to literature. Often only two group members engaged in the discussions with one another. Students rarely engaged in exploratory talk with one another in favor of other types of talk.