Introduction to Satire
This introduction to satire includes an EdPuzzle that introduces the definition of satire, examples, explanations of four satirical techniques (incongruity, hyperbole, reversal, and parody), and practice questions. A second activity asks students to locate an example of satire online, analyze the satirical techniques used, and explain the criticism or comment expressed in the example.
This lesson is all about satire.
Never heard of it? Don't worry, you've probably seen plenty of it!
Here are the objectives you'll be able to demonstrate by the end of our learning:
- Locate an example of satire, such as political cartoon, satirical article, or parody
- Explain the underlying critical comment or message of the satire
- Identify at least one of the four techniques of satire being used (hyperbole/exaggeration, absurdity/incongruity, reversal, parody)
Don't worry if you're not sure what some of these terms mean. You'll be an expert soon. Let's start!
What is Satire?
If you prefer to deliver this as a whole-class lesson, or you want to add your own examples (perhaps videos?) to the slides, you can make your own copy of the slides by clicking here: https://docs.google.com/presentation/d/1GyYmci1iTBflicYY01cwmlclAjNxo0eC9qCfvP49VL4/copy
Let's dive into the definition of satire, some examples, and some practice questions!
Watch this video and answer the questions on EdPuzzle: https://edpuzzle.com/media/5f1b13907407133f3cdd3158
Find Satire in the World
To create a slidedeck for students to add their findings and analysis, make a copy of this slidedeck and share it with your students: https://docs.google.com/presentation/d/1a6z_AG1i0T50n2s1uPjIa6q0m0zIBHxN4r1qv9Aomjk/copy
- You may want to make a copy of a slide for each student ahead of time. This can save confusion when there are several students on the slidedeck at once.
- Other alternatives to a slidedeck could be using a Google Doc or a Padlet. The advantage of a Padlet or Google Slidedeck is that students are able to see each other's work and naturally have a built-in audience.
- If students are still struggling with satire or satirical techniques, you might allow them to work in pairs.
- I use this as a formative assessment. This activity will give you a pulse of which students grasp satirical concepts and which ones need more help. I would not issue any grades other than completion grades for this activity.
Now that you have a background on satire, it's time to find and analyze an example of satire NOT in the slides.
Find an example of satire. It could be a clip on YouTube, an article from a satirical website, or a political cartoon.
Link the URL of an example of satire or a screenshot/image of the example on your slide.
Write an analysis of the following:
What is the underlying message of the creator? What are they really saying about the topic?
Explain at least one satirical technique the creator is using. (hyperbole, absurdity, reversal, parody)
There are three examples for you, so you'll be able to see exactly what you need to do.
Review Your Classmates' Examples
Other wrap-up options:
- Choose 3-4 examples to discuss as a whole group
- Ask small groups to choose their top 2 slides and explain their reasoning.
Read through the examples from other classmates. Leave comments on at least 2 examples.
Possible comment ideas:
- Do you see another strategy (hyperbole, incongruity, reversal, parody) being used that wasn't mentioned?
- Do you notice something else the original author/artist is trying to say?
- Is there an insightful explanation that impresses you? Compliment your classmate on that.