All resources in Media Literacy & Digital Citizenship

Digital Survival Skills & MisinfoNight (Updated)

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In this unit students will reflect on their own media environment, understand how cognitive bias and social media algorithms influence that environment, and learn how to investigate new sources and claims online. These activities culminate in a student-led "social science fair" MisinfoNight event where they present their new skills and knowledge to family members to help them become more savvy information consumers. 

Material Type: Lesson, Unit of Study

Authors: Liz Crouse, Shawn Lee

Deepfakes: Exploring Media Manipulation

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Students examine what deepfakes are and consider the deeper civic and ethical implications of deepfake technology. In an age of easy image manipulation, this lesson fosters critical thinking skills that empower students to question how we can mitigate the impact of doctored media content. This lesson plan includes a slide deck and brainstorm sheet for classroom use.

Material Type: Activity/Lab, Lesson, Lesson Plan

Author: Shana Ferguson

Introduction to Visual Media Literacy

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This social media literacy unit introduces students to foundational skills in analyzing images and social media posts. It also reenforces critical thinking questions that can be applied to various forms of media. This unit was taught to 9th grade students but is easily adaptible to a range of secondary classrooms. It was also taught in conjunction with another unit focused on social media platforms and content.

Material Type: Assessment, Homework/Assignment, Lesson Plan, Reading, Unit of Study

Author: Shana Ferguson

How a Medium Changes Discourse

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OverviewThe medium we choose to communicate a message can affect how that message is conveyed and how well the message will be understood by the receiver of the message.  This lesson gives the students a concrete way of seeing the effect a medium has on a message.  This lesson is part of a media unit curated at our Digital Citizenship website, "Who Am I Online?"

Material Type: Activity/Lab, Lesson

Authors: John Sadzewicz, Beth Clothier, Angela Anderson, Dana John

Don't Be Fooled By Food Messaging!

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 Description: Don’t be fooled by food messaging is a media literacy embedded health unit that takes the health goals of maintaining a healthy lifestyle and adds some critical thinking skills and communication skills. In food marketing young people are surrounded by persuasive claims meant to influence and manipulate their eating behavior. Students will explore some of the techniques and strategies food marketers use to influence their eating behavior to better understand how it impacts their own food choices. Within the PE program students will discuss how food choices, levels of consumption and physical activity levels influence health and wellness. Body image/healthy weight will be incorporated into this content. The culminating projects require students to work collaboratively to synthesize their new learning while using a variety of strategies to create their own healthy choices messaging production projects.

Material Type: Activity/Lab, Game, Lesson, Module, Unit of Study

Authors: Shawn Sheller, Barbara Soots, Kimberlee Swan, Julie Cantrell, Jill Minkiewitz, Mark Friden, Kirsten Lewandowski

The Terra Cotta Army and Qin Culture

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This inquiry asked students to answer the compelling question: What does the terra cotta army teach us about Qin culture? In order to answer the compelling questions students will analyze China's terra cotta warriors. Students will first formulate their own definitions of the terms: culture, artifact, afterlife, primary source, and secondary source. Once a working definition is found students will conduct an analysis of the terra cotta warriors. While analyzing the warriors and other sources, students will to question what was important to the Chinese during the Qin dynasty, what skills they valued, and what beliefs they had. While students work, they will also question the sources. Who wrote/made the source, why was it create, who is was/is the audience of the source, and if the source is biased. This mixture of looking over artifacts, reading texts, and questioning source material are all things good historians do.  

Material Type: Module, Unit of Study

Author: Samantha Fletcher

Native American Mascot Debate Inquiry Design Model (IDM)

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This inquiry takes students through analysis and evaluation of the Compelling Question “Should Washington State Ban the use of Native American mascots in their schools?” Students will be learning about the persuasive techniques of Political Cartoons, analyzing articles and images, reading interviews, and watching YouTube videos. The summative performance task is writing a letter to the Washington State Board of education stating their claim on whether or not they should or shouldn't allow schools to use Native American mascots.

Material Type: Unit of Study

Authors: Michele Doctor, Alicia Tonasket

Let's Get Social: Analyzing Social Media Platforms

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This unit engages students in a variety of activities that analyze and reflect on the role of social media in our everyday lives. This includes options for collaborative group work, reading nonfiction articles, a design challenge and presentations to communicate ideas. The unit also includes a formal writing assessment option that aligns with the Common Core State Writing Standards. Activities can be adapted or combined in a variety of ways to support student reflection and analysis. These lessons were piloted in 9th grade English classes but are suitable or a range of secondary students. 

Material Type: Activity/Lab, Assessment, Homework/Assignment, Lesson, Unit of Study

Author: Shana Ferguson

Artists, Information Literacy & Climate Change

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This unit explores the various ways information and ideas about climate change are presented through a variety of media. This includes the evaluation of social media posts, research into climate change issues, and an exploration of contemporary art and artists. This was designed and taught in an honors 9th grade English Language Arts Classroom by Dr. Tavia Quaid in response to student interest in climate change and to reinforce key information literacy skills.

Material Type: Assessment, Diagram/Illustration, Homework/Assignment, Lesson Plan, Reading

Author: Shana Ferguson


Info-luencer: Media Literacy and Civics

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This resource includes multiple lesson plans developed by Washington State teacher John Zingale and can be taught as part of in-person, hybrid, or remote instructional settings. The core content areas include social studies, civics, and media literacy and are designed for use with students in grades 6-12. Additional integrations include ELA, world languages, mathematics, physical education and science. These lessons integrate both state and national civics instruction using project-based and collaborative learning strategies. Features of these lessons include:student researchcollaborative learningdigital learning strategieslateral readingdesign and creation of infographicsTo support these lessons, additional resources are provided to help educators and families with understanding and teaching information and media literacy to young people. Resources include:introductions to media literacyeducator guidesparent guidesstudent learning standards

Material Type: Activity/Lab, Assessment

Author: Mark Ray