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Fake News

Interactive Tools

Facts Don't Matter Cartoon from The New Yorker by Joe Dator

New Yorker cartoon by Joe Dator; HT @KSchulten

Resources to Generate Ideas

The News Literacy Project offers several resources to help educators teach news literacy including:

  • The Sift -- a weekly newsletter that includes current examples of misinformation as well as tips to integrate into the classroom.
  • Civic Connections -- a blog that explores ideas, strategies and resources to encourage greater civic engagement among students.

"The Stanford History Education Group has prototyped, field tested, and validated a bank of assessments  that tap civic online reasoning—the ability to judge the credibility of information that floods young people’s smartphones, tablets, and  computers." A variety of tasks were given to middle school, high school, and college students. Download the Executive Summary to read about their process, rubric, and outcomes, as well as view sample tasks to integrate into the classroom including:

  • Home Page Analysis: Students identify advertisements on a news website; 
  • Evaluating Evidence: students decide whether to trust a photograph posted on a photo-sharing website; and
  • Claims on Social Media: Students read a tweet and explain why it might or might not be a useful source of information.

One great resource for practical activities can be found in a  January 19, 2017 article in The New York Times: "Evaluating Sources in a ‘Post-Truth’ World: Ideas for Teaching and Learning About Fake News." The article provides activities and questions as well as links to lesson plans. Topics covered include:

  • Understanding Different Types of Unreliable News
  • Following a Case Study in How Fake News Spreads
  • Tracking and Evaluating your News Ecosystem
  • Considering the Effects of Fake News on Democracy

The article also links to several other relevant articles from other resources in addition to The Times.

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