From bricks to clicks : hybrid commercial spaces in the landscape of early literacy and learning

Nixon, Helen (2011) From bricks to clicks : hybrid commercial spaces in the landscape of early literacy and learning. Journal of Early Childhood Literacy, 11(2), pp. 114-140.

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In their quest for resources to support children’s early literacy learning and development, parents encounter and traverse different spaces in which discourses and artifacts are produced and circulated. This paper uses conceptual tools from the field of geosemiotics to examine some commercial spaces designed for parents and children which foreground preschool learning and development. Drawing on data generated in a wider study I discuss some of the ways in which the material and virtual commercial spaces of a transnational shopping mall company and an educational toy company operate as sites of encounter between discourses and artifacts about children’s early learning and parents of preschoolers. I consider how companies connect with and ‘situate’ people as parents and customers, and then offer pathways designed for parents to follow as they attempt to meet their very young children’s learning and development needs. I argue that these pathways are both material and ideological, and that are increasingly tending to lead parents to the online commercial spaces of the world wide web. I show how companies are using the online environment and hybrid offline and online spaces and flows to reinforce an image of themselves as authoritative brokers of childhood resources for parents that is highly valuable in a policy climate which foregrounds lifelong learning and school readiness.

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ID Code: 41091
Item Type: Journal Article
Refereed: Yes
Keywords: literacy , early childhood, parents, world wide web, geosemiotics
DOI: 10.1177/1468798411401863
ISSN: 1468-7984
Subjects: Australian and New Zealand Standard Research Classification > EDUCATION (130000) > EDUCATION SYSTEMS (130100) > Early Childhood Education (excl. Maori) (130102)
Australian and New Zealand Standard Research Classification > EDUCATION (130000) > OTHER EDUCATION (139900) > Education not elsewhere classified (139999)
Divisions: Current > QUT Faculties and Divisions > Faculty of Education
Past > Schools > School of Cultural & Language Studies in Education
Copyright Owner: Copyright 2011 Sage Publications
Deposited On: 05 Apr 2011 01:15
Last Modified: 05 Nov 2013 23:32

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