South Portland, Maine, USA
A model can be useful when engaging secondary students in team-building by appreciating differing skills and identifying their own strengths. In this example, a model was provided that students to indulge in the transgression of popular culture and zombie media. Middle and high school students participated in a critical thinking and team-building unit which capitalized on student interest in zombie popular culture, particularly the AMC series The Walking Dead. Students engaged in cooperative activities with a “zombie apocalypse” theme. Activities included identifying roles for team members based on individual skill sets in order to strengthen to group as a whole. This approach allowed students to approach this unit as assembling a “zombie apocalypse team,” an idea borrowed from popular culture. The popular culture “zombie apocalypse team” shows that survival depends on building a cooperative team of individuals with disparate but complementary skills and approaches to problem solving. Howard Gardner’s theory of multiple intelligences can provide theoretical framework to examine how the group of survivors in The Walking Dead combine multiple intelligences, as represented by individual characters, to survive. This model can provide a more detailed context to allow students to their own strengths within a team.
Keywords: educational psychology, Howard Gardner, intelligence, Multiple Intelligences, psychology, The Walking Dead, pedagogy, team building, secondary education
Elizabeth Gartley is a certified teacher librarian with a background in media studies. Her research interests include language and literacies in comics, critical media literacy and pedagogy, cross-cultural approaches to media studies.
Gartley, E. (2018). We All Have Jobs Here: Teaching and Learning with Multiple Intelligences in The Walking Dead. Dialogue: The Interdisciplinary Journal of Popular Culture and Pedagogy. 5(3) http://journaldialogue.org/issues/v5-issue-3/we-all-have-jobs-here-teaching-and-learning-with-multiple-intelligences-in-the-walking-dead/
Gartley, Elizabeth. “We All Have Jobs Here: Teaching and Learning with Multiple Intelligences in The Walking Dead”. Dialogue: The Interdisciplinary Journal of Popular Culture and Pedagogy. 2018, vol. 5, no 3. http://journaldialogue.org/issues/v5-issue-3/we-all-have-jobs-here-teaching-and-learning-with-multiple-intelligences-in-the-walking-dead/