Today’s Ypulse Interview is with D.C. Vito, Executive Director for The LAMP. An organization after our own heart, the LAMP [the Learning About Multimedia Project] is a Brooklyn-based non-profit dedicated to addressing the lack of media literacy in New York city schools and helping educators and parents to better engage in the dialogue around the issue.
This summer, as an extension of that mission, the team launched LAMPcamp, a four day program at a local YMCA designed to help tween campers explore the influence of advertising and the ways gender was represented in media. I spoke with DC to find out more.
Ypulse: How does LAMPcamp fit in to LAMP’s vision of media literacy? What was the inspiration for extending the project into a summer camp?
D.C.: It fits perfectly into our vision of media literacy because we’re tackling several forms of media (video, print, texting, comic books, music videos, documentaries, social networks) and trying to break them apart for our LAMPers. From the very beginning when Katherine and I formed The LAMP, we had always envisioned a summer camp. You can really accomplish a great deal when you have the students entrenched in a concentrated exploration of media literacy. And because we were able to break it into girls- and boys-only sections for some of the lessons, we were really able to expand on issues of gender representation, reinforcement and manipulation in the media - which is one of our major goals.
YP: What was the process for coming up with the curriculum of LAMPcamp? What did you want “LAMPers” to take away from the session?
D.C.: We took existing curricula we’ve used for previous workshops and tailored it for the age group and time we had to work with. Katherine was very intent on making the curricula flexible with both our different media…