It's Critical!: Classroom Strategies for Promoting Critical and Creative Comprehension.


160 pages
Contains Photos, Illustrations, Bibliography, Index
ISBN 978-1-55138-228-9
DDC 372.47





Reviewed by Ginette Roberge


In light of the considerable rate of evolution of technology in current times, individuals are exposed to a wealth of information from countless mediums. With this paradigm shift of increasing dependence on technology for daily activities, educators have the added responsibility of teaching their students to reflect critically upon the verbal and textual information they encounter in their lives to allow them to discern between the consequential and the meaningless.


This book begins with the author’s personal insight into critical literacy. The central objective of the text is to highlight pedagogical practices by which teachers can empower students to act in response to their reading using various communication technologies. The author compares the school environment to a swimming pool where individuals grow increasingly confident in their abilities as they continue to apply and practise their knowledge.


The author congregates a number of “wise and experienced educators” to share media and critical literacy activities that they have validated in their classroom. Key instructional strategies are proposed to enhance student reading comprehension. These strategies include turning an ordinary novel into a graphic novel, conducting online literature circles and discussions through blogs, analyzing media advertisements, inventing robots, and learning through the arts. Some contributors also make the following cross-curricular connections: critical discussion of problem-solving strategies in mathematics, text transformation of science notes for a language arts classroom, historical role plays, and bullying dramatizations. These types of connections are especially important due to the time constraints faced by educators to cover curriculum content.


While adding substantial value to the text, the practitioner contributions would have been further enhanced by incorporating worksheets or templates to allow readers to replicate the activities suggested. In addition, many of the educators provided titles of reading selections. An organized reference list of these titles would allow the reader to more readily acquire the texts. Nonetheless, the pedagogical approaches and practical strategies presented in this book enable educators to maximize their use of communication technologies in the classroom to keep current with advances, with the ultimate goal of enabling students to act as critical thinkers within this technologically advanced world.


Booth, David., “It's Critical!: Classroom Strategies for Promoting Critical and Creative Comprehension.,” Canadian Book Review Annual Online, accessed May 27, 2024,