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Denver Comic Con offering free passes to educators

Published: April 7, 2014, 1:17 pm, by Terry Terrones

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If you’re an educator looking to use pop culture to help your students, Denver Comic Con has a free program specifically made for you. The DCC wants to show you how to put comic books, television, video games and geek culture to good use.

Denver Comic Con and Literacy Conference, a program of Comic Book Classroom (CBC) designed to help promote literacy through pop culture, announced last week that it will be distributing 200 single-day passes to educators. The passes are good for the first day of the con, Friday June 13. Teachers, paraprofessionals, administrators, PTO representatives, education students, and professors can apply for the free passes to DCC, which runs June 13-15, right here.

“CBC understands the financial situation facing today’s schools and that professional development is one of the first things to get cut,” said Illya Kowalchuk, CBC’s education director. “Our intention is to develop an accredited program for salary and recertification credit, possibly as soon as next year. Getting educators familiar with the potential of pop culture in learning environments is the first step.”

Educators will be asked to attend at least three hours of education tract programming at the con on Friday, June 13. Upon completion of the sessions, educators will receive the CBC unit of study, “Storytelling Through Comics” and a gift bag of CBC/DCC merchandise. The initial programming schedule includes:

-   “Introduction to Comics, Graphic Novels and Pop Culture” – Basic anatomy of comics and graphic novels, what is pop culture, and why they are important

- “Top 15 Graphic Novels and Comics for the Classroom” – Resources and suggestions on how to identify and select material for instructors who would like to include them in their classrooms

-  “Critical Thinking, Problem Solving, and Video Games” – Using video games to teach and support critical thinking and problem solving skills

-  “’Cult’ Culture” – Using popular television shows to discuss themes, universality, and characterization

- “Using Comics and Graphics Novel in the Special Education Classroom” – Specifically to support reading and writing

- “Carving out a Career in the ‘Geek’ Industry” – How to make a career as an artist, writer, designer in comics, television, gaming, etc…

The application process for the educator pass closes May 1. Passes will be mailed to educators so they do not need to stand in the line for the badging process.

“There is tremendous value in engaging kids with what they’re already interested in, comics and pop culture, and this is our way of sharing that with some of the people that are the best able to affect the next generation,” said Kowalchuk.