Open House of The Neighhourhood Theatre (TNT) “in-residence” at the Atwater Library and Computer Centre


Experience the work of The Neighhourhood Theatre (TNT) “in-residence” at the Atwater Library and Computer Centre – 1200 Atwater Avenue


Exhibits & Displays of student Projects – Photography – Short Videos – Stop-Motion Animation – Cabaret with Live Performance – A Ghost Story – an iPad That Reads,  & more …

(a Collaboration between the Atwater Library and students from the Specialization in Theatre and Development at Concordia University)

Everyone Welcome!

TNT Poster

In Support of Media Literacy Week a Screening of ‘Our Privacy Matters! Youth, Identity, and Online Sociability’

What: Video screening of Our Privacy Matters! Youth, Identity, and Online Sociability

Why: 2012 Media Literacy Week

When: Friday, November 9, 2012, 6-7pm

Where: Atwater Library and Computer Centre
1200 Atwater Ave., Westmount

About: This year the annual Media Literacy Week, co-led by MediaSmarts and the Canadian Teachers’ Federation (CTF), will take place the week of November 5-9. This year’s theme, ‘Privacy Matters’, highlights online privacy knowledge and skills for youth.

As part of the celebration, the Digital Literacy Project is happy to host video documentary by Giuliana Cucinelli (director, co-producer, writer), Postdoctoral Fellow at the Mobile Media Lab (Concordia University and York University) and Professor Leslie Regan Shade (co-producer, writer, research consultant), Associate Professor at the University of Toronto in the Faculty of Information.

Our Privacy Matters! Youth, Identity, and Online Sociability is a short video documentary that brings forward the voices of Canadian youth and media educators. It is designed to serve as both an introduction to the various issues related to privacy, social media and youth and also serve as a provocation for youth to become more involved in not only shaping the social media landscape but in educating policymakers about their insights and concerns about online privacy.

The video was also made with the many talents of Concordia students: Anthony Korkidakis, Rob Lynch, Cynthia Wong, Tamara Shepherd.
For more information about the film see:

A Partnership Between a University, a Library and a Community Organization: A Gestalt of Digital Skills Learning

Written by Eric and Robin

When supporting digital skills for  grassroots organizations, partnerships between different types of organizations can create more than the sum its parts. For this workshop, the Digital Literacy Project collaborated with Concordia’s Mobile Media Lab to support Ressources ethnoculturelles contre l’abus envers les aînéEs (RECAA) with a digital skills building and video workshop.

Last fall, Eric was introduced to Anne Caines by Alannah Murphy of the Community Learning Center  at James Lyng High School.  Anne is the coordinator of RECAA. As an organization, RECAA does workshops for ethnocultural communities in Montreal which involve the performance of silent theatre pieces. These workshops promote a culture of respect and engage those communities in dialogue about elder abuse.

It was easy to find multiple areas for collaboration and we were excited to help this group explore video.

Around the same time, Eric was introduced to Dr. Kim Sawchuk of Concordia’s Communications Department by former Digital Literacy Coordinator Arwen Fleming.

All the ingredients were coming together to make a dynamic collaboration.

Through this partnership between RECAA, the Digital Literacy Project of the Atwater Library and Computer Centre and Concordia University’s Mobile Media Lab, members of RECAA spent this past season building their organization’s digital assets and exploring media production. In the process of this collaboration, many ideas were tabled and the group had many opportunities to try out practical techniques and explore the theoretical ideas surrounding the making your own media. As a group, they were very motivated to integrate these skills into the overall vision of the group.

Could the group use a video representation of the wordless theatre via video conferencing to do outreach to communities that they could not physically go?

What other ways could media be used to promote a culture of respect and to promote an awareness of elder abuse?

The session, animated by Concordia Masters student and Digital Literacy Project facilitator Sophie Guerin, was largely focused on filming and editing a video to be used as a promotional tool and to spread awareness about elder abuse.

Sophie Guerin notes,

“That’s what video is supposed to be used for, to transmit an important message to a wider audience. The RECAA people understood it right away. They really enjoyed the workshops and recognized that technology could be used to raise awareness against elder abuse. When the video was done, for the first time, they were looking at their own work on the screen. This video was a lot of effort for them much like the effort that is necessary when working with any social cause. When we see the result at the end, it is something we are always proud of.”

Additional aspects to the session have included using a blog platform to conduct outreach, as well as image scanning and creating slideshow presentations facilitated by Digital Literacy Project facilitator Robin Kelley. The video and slideshow were produced in time for screening at the International Elder Abuse Awareness Day event that RECAA organized.

Anne elaborates,

“We did not think that digital images could do justice to the personal connections that we made in our theatre workshops. This has been a more than educational experience. In coming together to record our work digitally, to present it on a screen we have re- discovered RECAA and renewed our commitment to work on a subject that is truly difficult and disturbing. It has re-energized each of us in very surprising ways. Some of us never thought we could feel that the computer was an ally and not an alien and unfriendly media for elder people.”

In our experience the practice of using digital media often leads to benefits that we had not anticipated.   Early on in our session RECAA members discovered an exciting and unplanned use for the video skills they were learning – using video to document their theatre performances and practice sessions, both as an active tool for improvement and for archival purposes. Recording their practice sessions allows the actors to view the skit from multiple vantage points and immediately make improvements. It also allows them to save a visual documentation of pieces that they may not use any longer and develops their archive. An added benefit of this is a digital archive that preserves the organization’s long-term memory.

Robin Kelley notes,

“It’s always an exciting moment for us when we get to see a group find new, unintended uses for the tools they’re learning about. It means that the participants are taking it to the next level – that from our work together they’ve recognized the potential opportunities these tools offer – and they are going for it!”

Collaborating with different groups in the community, especially different types of organisations can help pool resources, skills and perspectives. Our collaboration with RECAA and Concordia really shows how this can deepen everyone’s work.

Dr. Kim Sawchuk elaborates further,

“It has been a joy working with RECAA and with the DLP. There has been an exciting exchange of ideas and perspectives that generate more ideas every time we meet. RECAA are energetic, visionary -unstoppable- and real model for rethinking what we mean by “active ageing”. Talk about active! What makes this so fun, and serious at the same time,  is that the MML, the DLP and RECAA share a basic set of values. We all start with the idea of community. We have a similar attitude towards technology, teaching and social justice. The MML is committed to participatory media research and this melds perfectly with RECAA’s approach to theatre.  It is an inspiring collaboration, and true partnership.”


Check out the video “Talking About Elder Abuse” that the members of RECAA made in collaboration with the Digital Literacy Project and Concordia’s  Mobile Media Lab.


Everyone wins when youth get engaged with digital media: Jeunes en action – CJE-NDG shows us how

At the Digital Literacy Project, we believe that offering digital skills workshops to community groups helps the participants gain confidence and become empowered to express themselves through media. This increases their sense of opportunities for their own personal goals. Further still, we think that engaging youth with digital media skills  is important for the community in general. Helping reduce barriers to digital tools gets youth involved in positive projects, working on their skills and, more than likely, contributing to Montreal’s economy.

Youth have a lot to offer when given the opportunity to create.

We collaborated with Jeunes en action, a youth socio-professional integrational program of the Carrefour Jeunesse Emploi-NDG , again this winter. We worked on the second part of a documentary video project that we began in the fall of 2011.

We began with a screening of the documentary video we made in the fall. After having chance to look at what they had done, the participants were inspired to make their documentary video have more impact and to get the message out about Jeunes en action.

To tell the story of Jeunes en action, they decided that they needed to tell their personal stories as the goals and aspirations of the participant are deeply tied to the mandate of the Jeunes en actions.

Unanimously, the group wanted to strongly situate the documentary about their program in the neighborhood where they live. They felt that the story of Jeunes en action at the Carrefour jeunesse emploi-NDG could not be told without telling a bit about their relationship to their neighborhood.

Notre-Dame-de-Grâce became a major theme in the work and with almost nationalistic fervour they ‘represented’ NDG with their interviews, video footage and lyrics to original music.

At the Digital Literacy Project, we like working with video because it has the potential to bring a group together. There are many tasks required in video projects; everyone can find a role.


  • Shoot video
  • Edit video
  • Work on soundtrack music
  • Write scripts
  • Plan and organize
  • Contribute to the overall messaging.

Jeunes en action participant Seven explains:

” I think this class is great because it brings together a group of people with a broad level of experience with computers, and we have to learn and work together, helping each other along the way to develop a final product that we can all say we helped make together.”

Working on a documentary video is great way of increasing digital literacy in a community organization setting. Participants learn that they can use media to express themselves and the goals of their community project.

This type of experience helps participants have the confidence to tackle other digital media projects for themselves or for a future project or job.

There were many people in this workshop that had little or no experience with digital media and by the end were motivated to pursue it further.


“I really enjoyed the DLP I really loved editing the video clips, it was a great experience and something I would be interested in doing one day in the future”


“At first I was not too sure about DLP and their whole project! But now its the end of the project and I wish it would never end! I love taking pics and videos. Now I know that it’s a great interest of mine. I have learned to edit as well! It motivated me to wanna make a short-movie…”

While video skills are relevant to many workplaces, the experience of working on a multi-facetted project are going to be relevant to every workplace environment. Participants have to express themselves and work together. Discuss abstract ideas and put them into concrete action.

Jeunes en action coordinator- Mary elaborates further:

“We truly feel that the DLP fits in with the mission of the Jeunes en action program: young people’s personal, social and professional development. The final product is certainly a big personal and professional achievement for all the participants, who had the opportunity to use their strengths and challenge themselves to learn new skills. The process of media production works on the social level by fostering team spirit in a diverse group of people working together.”

A few of the participants actively make music in their lives. Doing a project like this offers another venue to work on their music practice. The participants made all the music and wrote lyrics and raps for this project. During the project the participants discussed the question:

“What does it mean to make music for a documentary video about a community program?”

It is different from making music in which you only represents yourself. The challenge is to make it ‘cool’ yet ‘appropriate.’

Geoff notes:

“I really enjoyed the digital literacy program as a musician it was really cool to incorporate my music with video footage we all put together, I really enjoy it….”

In our experience, we see a lot of very talented young people with a lot drive. It is great to make a space for them to deepen their skills and confidence with digital media. We see a lot of young people who are very excited to contribute to their communities.

We need to get their energy out in the community!


Please check out ‘Taking a Walk with CJE in NDG”




Digital Literacy Project Book Sale Fundraiser @ Trafalgar School for Girls

On May 3 and 4 2012 Trafalgar School for Girls  held a book sale in support of the Digital Literacy Project of the Atwater Library and Computer Centre.

Last year we worked with Trafalgar School for Girls on two Gender and Mass Media workshops and we’re looking forward to more collaboration.

The Digital Literacy Project would like to thank the team at Trafalgar School For Girls for their support!