An Interview With Program Director Jeff Mangram On Doodle The News

An Interview With Program Director Jeff Mangram On Doodle The News

With my experiences testing Doodle the News among different target audiences, I’ve come to understand how this multiplatfrom hub could be most viable among elementary and middle school students. Our media literacy workshops have received glowing feedback from high school and college students, but most participants believed Doodle the News belonged to their younger siblings, cousins, etc.

Thanks to the help of Professor Jeff Mangram, I was able to hold participant observation for his early childhood education students. Mangram was in attendance, helping me facilitate my discussion about Doodle the News.

After my overview presentation, I managed to interview Professor Mangram about what he thought about my presentation and Doodle the News moving forward as a media education technology.

I addressed how most of the students (12/15) in his class were female, and the three males in the room would seldom speak up. When asking Mangram why this may have been, he believed “males tend not to be as invested in their educations as females.” This is interesting to note, as I found that common theme to be true growing up. Most of my primary school teachers were female, and it was cool to see budding educators tend to mostly be female as well.

The presentation was somewhat sticky at first, but the debrief section provided a smoother conversation from the class. Mangram thought students were more comfortable to ask me questions after my presentation because “the formal presentation was over and then once [the students] believed that the environment was informal and that their voices would be heard, they then felt comfortable enough to speak about the presentation.”

It’s good to know the clear distinction that was made as students began interacting with me and my presentation, as the feedback was very helpful and constructive. Moving forward, I will ensure I leave ample time to focus on talking through Doodle the News near the end of all my presentations.

Additionally, I asked Mangram if he was familiar with this quote from John Dewey’s Democracy in Education: “Education is necessary to enable people to participate in democracy, for without an education, informed, and literate citizenry, strong democracy is impossible.”

Mangram agreed, noting how “democracy requires choices and choices are based on sets of information that have to be consumed and thought about. If citizens cannot think critically, there can be no democracy.” For what it’s worth, I also agree.

It’s hard to truly understand what information is real or not on the internet. This whole fake news fiasco has completely damaged the fabric of our social media society. At Doodle the News, we believe tackling this issue at younger ages is the effective way to deal with this problem efficiently and will add value to our global society.

Mangram also addressed how “youngsters cannot distinguish fake news from real news. Still, they are impacted by all forms of news because it shapes the very facet of their lives.” News and media truly are powerful entities, and creating innovative educational technologies to enrich media for our your target is vital.

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Tobenna Attah
Transmedia Entrepreneur
Tobe V. Attah is a multimedia entrepreneur with a mission to innovate in today’s new media landscape while making a meaningful impact in the world. He founded Doodle the News in October 2017, a mutliplatform hub for people to have their voices heard and help them become more civic minded through bite-sized journalism.
He has been published across a wide variety of media outlets, including Sports Illustrated, the Cornell Daily Sun, SportTechie, Clutchpoints, Cavs Nation, the Cornell Chronicle, and many more.
Tobe has a plethora of hobbies, including writing, athletics, drawing, acting, and collaborating with others about ideas and startups working in the multimedia space.