March 2020
Org Partner Spotlight
"The  Critical Media Project  first launched in 2013 to facilitate instructor and youth engagement in critical media literacy by offering an accessible online archive and repository of media centering on identity and representation. At the time, we saw a need to provide a media literacy resource that included actual media examples. Our organization facilitates media literacy education by providing key resources to engage youth in critical thinking about media and the ways it serves as a conduit and platform for representing identities. In our focus on representation, we also encourage youth to respond to media they see and consume, to make their own media and envision their own identities."
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Virtually Viral Hangouts
1 p.m. ET through Friday, March 27
The Media Education Lab is hosting “Virtually Viral Hangouts,” a video chat space for conversation, dialogue, and emotional support. The free, one-hour sessions each day may have a theme, but they are also a place to describe or demonstrate a resource, assignment, or instructional strategy that are being used for teaching and learning online. [ learn more ]
Critical Pedagogy Blindspots Webinar
March 23 @ 7 p.m. ET
In this free webinar hosted by the Media Education Lab, researchers will discuss information and media literacy research and teaching collaboration, and draw on classroom experiences to highlight some of the challenges faced when teaching students from a wide range of political backgrounds. [ learn more ]
2020 Share My Lesson Virtual Conference
March 24-26
This three-day conference for teachers, school staff, parents, and community members features several webinars about current events and student activism, building inclusive communities, and instructional strategies across curriculum. Webinars can be available for professional development credit. [ learn more ]

The 1619 Project: Activities for Student Engagement
March 24 @ 4 p.m. ET
Join the Pulitzer Center as they present materials to support student engagement with “The 1619 Project,” including their lesson for Nikole Hannah-Jones's lead essay, a reading guide for the issue, and extension activities. [ learn more ]

Help Students Avoid Risk and Reap the Benefits of Digital Citizenship
March 26 @ 3 p.m. ET
In this presentation, Common Sense Education will share an overview of the pedagogical approaches, strategies, and resources they offer to teach digital citizenship to students in middle and high school. [ learn more ]

When Civics Games Connect With ELA Writing Activities
March 26 @ 4 p.m. ET
Presented by iCivics, this webinar will provide tips for connecting civics-based video games to ELA writing exercises and skills. Participants will explore how to collaborate with a social studies/history teacher or how to use iCivics games independently to serve as a launchpad for class discussions and writing activities. [ learn more ]

Teaching Complex Current Events and Supporting Student Well-Being
March 26 @ 4 p.m. ET
As educators face questions of how to discuss complex and fast-changing stories with students like the coronavirus, join Facing History and Ourselves, PBS NewsHour Extra and the American Federation of Teachers to explore approaches of addressing this current event with media literacy, strategies for supporting students’ social-emotional well-being, and resources to probe deeper questions about community, responsibility and the common good. [ learn more ]

Teaching Election 2020: Engaging Youth Voice Around Current Events
March 26 @ 8 p.m. ET
PBS NewsHour Extra and PBS Student Reporting Labs will discuss how storytelling and current events can spark civic awareness in students during a presidential election year. Attendees will take part in conversation and Q&A around teaching resources — including videos, activities, and lesson plans available on current events and misinformation — for middle and high school students on the 2020 election. [ learn more ]
Media Literacy at Virtual Spring CUE Conference
April 1 and April 3
KQED will be speaking on a variety of topics around media literacy, from youth civic engagement to culturally responsive teaching, at the Virtual Spring CUE 2020 Conference. One session on April 1 will explore ways middle and high school students are analyzing election issues and creating media to share their views and connect with peers across the nation. Their second session on April 3 will break down the process of creating infographics and their third session on April 3 will focus on how to bring culturally responsive teaching practices into your classroom using digital portfolios. Registration is $75 to attend their sessions and others at the virtual conference. [ learn more ]
DigiURI Media Club
April 6 @ 9 a.m. ET
Join the Media Education Lab to discuss the episode "Pop Culture Academia, Screen Time, and Automated Delivery" from the Media and the End of the World podcast. [ learn more ]

How Media Literacy Handles Distorted Science
Monday April 13 @ 7 p.m. ET
In this discussion, Media Education Lab and Project Look Sharp will talk about how to teach about distorted science, exploring how to use false or deceptive science in media literacy lessons to teach students how to analyze and evaluate truth and how to avoid perpetuating false dichotomies when decoding “opposing sides” in debates like climate change or vaccinations. [ learn more ]
In the News
Social Justice and Media Symposium Recap
The inaugural symposium on Social Justice & Media convened in February in Boston to explore the intersection of social justice and media as it relates to community and pedagogy in daily life. In this write-up of the event, attendees explored how media narrative supports social justice frames and how it combats oppressive structures in today’s society. [ read more ]
Educators Are Pushing To Teach Media Literacy In School
Erin McNeill, founder of Media Literacy Now, discusses her efforts to “get media literacy on the public policy agenda,” in this article from Supermajority News, which reports on the news stories that impact women's lives. She also talks about the role media literacy can play in accurate representations of women in the media. [ read more ]
Second Annual Youth Collective Summit Focuses on Civic Engagement
On March 5, WNET hosted its second Youth Collective Summit in New York City. This year’s theme was “Beyond the Vote: Gen Z and Civic Engagement,” which focused on storytelling and media-making around election-year issues, and a media literacy workshop led by Mediawise. [ read more ]
The Rescue List Documentary Premiere and Lesson Plan
The documentary, coproduced by American Documentary/POV, focuses on former child slaves in Ghana who help their rescuer find others trapped in modern slavery. A lesson plan for middle- to high-school students encourages students to think critically about the lasting legacy and persistence of slavery in order to imagine actionable alternatives. The documentary premieres March 23 at 10 p.m. ET on local PBS stations. [ learn more ]
Election HQ
Looking for election teaching tools? iCivics launched its Election HQ database for teachers, administrators, and parents to help facilitate learning about the 2020 U.S. elections. Resources included election-focused games, lesson plans, infographics, WebQuests to help students connect civics concepts to the real world, and blogs written by educators. [ learn more ]
7 Civics Lesson Plans
These seven video-based lessons from PBS NewsHour Extra for students in middle and high school look at key issues for the 2020 U.S. election like political parties, voting rights, media bias, and local and state elections. [ learn more ]
New Approaches to Teaching Media Literacy in the Age of Misinformation
In a blog post, IREX discusses their Learn to Discern media literacy training program for teachers and the importance of addressing the problems that students face today, such as navigating social media news feeds, determining which sources are reliable, distinguishing between facts and opinions, and becoming better digital citizens. [ read more ]
Speak Up! Guide to Changing the World, Online and Off
Thanks to the internet and social media, it’s easier than ever to share views and encourage others to join a movement in making change. This guide from MediaSmarts shows how to use social networks to make a difference and have different voices heard. [ read more ]
The Student’s Guide to Information Disorders
What does “fake news” actually mean? Not much, argues one journalism student. In a blog post for News Co/Lab, she tries to recognize the elements of information disorder in her own life and how “fake news” is a vague term that doesn’t fully encompass today’s wide range of information issues. [ read more ]
Why We Need to Think Critically about the Facts
Project Look Sharp discusses how knowing which sources and “facts” to trust and which to discount has become an increasingly daunting task. In this blog post, they consider critical thinking to be at the heart of a constructivist media decoding approach to media literacy. [ read more ]
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