Teachers and parents can be at a loss on the topic of media literacy. We know it’s important—our young people are bombarded with messages constantly. How can we help them understand what they’re seeing, reading, and hearing? Let alone creating and sharing themselves! How can we help them evaluate the messenger as well as the message?
Click the image below to open it in a new window.This guide for teachers and parents has been created as part of Media Literacy Week by two AME board members, Ethan Delavan (high school IT director) and Janith Pewitt (high school classroom teacher). Michael Danielson, board chair (teacher and EdTech director) designed the publication.
As part of our launch of Media Literacy Week, we are excited to promote the work of Dr. Don Shifrin, Emeritus Clinical Professor of Pediatrics at University of Washington – School of Medicine as he helps us to understand important concepts around screen time and digital citizenship while we are all participating in remote learning. Watch AMEs interview with Dr. Don by viewing the links below:
Dr. Don Shifrin has been a beloved pediatrician to his patients for 40 years as well as a Clinical Professor of Pediatrics at the University of Washington. His knowledge and active interest in the field of Media Literacy have earned him an often self-proclaimed role of a “Mediatrician.”Dr. Shifrin has been a very active member of the American Academy of Pediatrics throughout his long career. He has testified before Congress, represented the Academy on national task forces, chaired an Academy committee, led media training for Academy leadership, and was the co-editor for the Academy’s first parent newsmagazine, Healthy Children. You may recognize him from the AAP’s “A Minute for Kids” radio program and from other radio and television spots where he often expertly speaks about media issues as they relate to our nation’s children. His views on navigating the media literacy issues of today offer invaluable advice to parents, teachers and children of all ages.
Michael Danielson is AME’s Chairperson. He has been a teacher at Seattle Prep for 26 years. He has been teaching Media Literacy and Digital Citizenship for decades, but most recently in a semester course for 9th graders. He is also the EdTech director helping to train teachers and students in the best use of technology. Michael has been a writer for the Center for Media Literacy.
Action for Media Education Announces a New Initiative: The Corona Multimedia Showcase
For Immediate Release Date: 6/3/2020
If we could ask kids around the world what they’re thinking and feeling right now, what would they say? Action for Media Education (AME) https://action4mediaeducation.org is inviting young people from ages 3-19 and their families to participate in an international online exhibit of creative work that reflects their lives in this time of COVID-19.
More than 40 countries are participating in the Corona Multimedia Showcase initiative. Now AME seeks entries from young people across the United States.
The Showcase provides a platform for children, youth and their families to create and display media projects in a variety of formats. These projects will be digitally published on our Showcase website.
The Showcase is intended to provide young people around the world with the opportunity to:
Express their thoughts, feelings and ideas
Engage them in reflecting critically on their work and support their best efforts
Help them share their experiences with other young people and their families around the world
Provide a place for them to display their creative work and express their own unique voices
Inspire hope and demonstrate that we will persevere, with our courage and creativity, during this crisis and into a new future
Please help us spread the word to your family, your community and those with whom you work.
Submissions and participation are free.
This is NOT a competition but a festival celebrating the creativity of children and youth throughout the world.
The deadline for submissions is October 9, 2020. All projects (reviewed by a large group of experts) will be posted on the Showcase website by the end of October.
To submit an entry, find ideas and resources, and join the conversation:
Washington’s Office of the Superintendent of Public Instruction (OSPI) is accepting grant applications for its media literacy grant program now and the due date is May 28th!
Grant applications must focus on one of the following: 1. Development or adaptation of at least one openly-licensed 2-4 week curriculum unit focused on media literacy or digital citizenship, or both, which can be integrated into social studies, English language arts, or health classes, and is aligned with Washington state standards in these content areas
2. Implementation of an existing openly-licensed 2-4 week curriculum unit focused on media literacy or digital citizenship, and use of this experience to develop extended or supplemental curricular materials (e.g., add supports for ELL or special education students, add optional supplemental lessons, etc.).
Submissions may come from a public school, district office, ESD or a partnership between multiple educational partners. Only one proposal may be submitted per organization. Grant requests may not exceed $25,000. Washington’s Office of the Superintendent of Public Instruction (OSPI) will soon be accepting grant applications for its media literacy grant program.
Currently, OSPI’s plan is to make an announcement about these new grants between early and mid-April with applications due in mid-May. Should these dates change, we’ll be sure to let you know.
Grant applications must focus on one of the following:
1. Development or adaptation of at least one openly-licensed 2-4 week curriculum unit focused on media literacy or digital citizenship, or both, which can be integrated into social studies, English language arts, or health classes, and is aligned with Washington state standards in these content areas
2. Implementation of an existing openly-licensed 2-4 week curriculum unit focused on media literacy or digital citizenship, and use of this experience to develop extended or supplemental curricular materials (e.g., add supports for ELL or special education students, add optional supplemental lessons, etc.). Submissions may come from a public school, district office, ESD or a partnership between multiple educational partners. Only one proposal may be submitted per organization. Grant requests may not exceed $25,000.
Twelve grant recipients received awards for 2019-2020. Applications for this second round of funding will focus on implementation during 2020-2021. Grant application details will be available from OSPI in April. For more information, please contact Dennis Small Dennis.Small@k12.wa.us
Twelve grant recipients received awards for 2019-2020. Applications for this second round of funding will focus on implementation during 2020-2021. Grant application details will be available from OSPI in April. For more information, please contact Dennis Small Dennis.Small@k12.wa.us
Washington’s Office of the Superintendent of Public Instruction made history when it recently announced the first group of recipients for our state’s new media literacy grant program. This is the first grant program focused on media literacy offered anywhere in the nation! Funds were awarded through a competitive process to 12 school-based teams.
Grant Awardees for 2019-20:
Ballard High School (Seattle SD)
Bryant Elementary School (Seattle SD)
Castle Rock SD
Central Valley High School
Columbia River High School (Vancouver SD)
La Conner SD
North Central ESD 171
Port Townsend SD
Soos Creek Elementary School (Kent SD)
Whatcom Intergenerational High School
Teams could apply for curriculum grants of up to $25,000 or planning grants of up to $5000. The five teams receiving curriculum grants were Ballard, Central Valley High School, North Central ESD 171, Soos Creek Elementary, Kent SD and LaConner SD in collaboration with high schools in Burlington, Mt. Vernon, and Anacortes. The remaining six teams received planning grants.
All grant recipients will focus on developing media literacy-based curriculum units that can be integrated into social studies, English language arts or health classes. All units will be shared on the OER Commons Washington Hub so that they can be easily accessed by teachers across the state.
The new media literacy grant program was established with a $300,000 allocation from the 2019 Legislature. $150,000 was available for this grant round. The next grant cycle will be announced in Spring, 2020 when another $150,000 in funding will be available for distribution.
Action for Media Education (AME) continues to promote and advocate for media literacy education. Please follow us on Facebook. We encourage you to stay tuned to AME for more media literacy-related happenings in our state in 2020!
Media Literacy Week here in Washington has had lots of support even at the highest levels of our state’s government. AME is very pleased to announce that last week Governor Inslee declared October 21 -25th Media Literacy Week here in our state. Thank you, Governor Inslee!
AME board members have created a new elementary handout for teachers just in time for Media Literacy Week, with a reminder that we can use these ideas every day of the year. Special thanks to Kathryn Egawa, Anne Aliverti, Shawn Sheller for their work on these handouts. Also check out our handout for secondary school teachers developed by Kathryn Egawa, Ethan Delavan, Janith Pewitt, and Michael Danielson.
Media Literacy Week asks people to think hard about the information they’re consuming, and asks teachers to talk about it in their classrooms. PAULA WISSEL / KNKX
Educators in Washington state — and around the world — are spending time this week talking about media literacy. It’s part of a special week designed to boost students’ understanding of how different forms of media function.
“When it comes to media literacy, we mean everything,” said Joanne Lisosky, who taught media studies at Pacific Lutheran University prior to her recent retirement. Social media, visual media, aural media — any outside stimulus counts.
“Media literacy education didn’t start in the U.S.,” she said. “It started in Europe and Australia and Canada. You can’t graduate from high school without having a class in media literacy.” “When it comes to media literacy, we mean everything,” said Joanne Lisosky, who taught media studies at Pacific Lutheran University prior to her recent retirement. Social media, visual media, aural media — any outside stimulus counts.
“Media literacy education didn’t start in the U.S.,” she said. “It started in Europe and Australia and Canada. You can’t graduate from high school without having a class in media literacy.”
That’s not the case in the United States, and Lisosky worries that makes Americans more susceptible to being tricked by fake news.
Washington state officially recognized Media Literacy Week when Gov. Jay Inslee signed a proclamation in 2016. It encourages teachers across the state to talk about media literacy in their classrooms.
But media literacy is important for adults, too, and Lisosky says she regularly hears from people who want help deconstructing journalism – figuring out why a story was done a certain way, and why certain outlets favor one type of story over another.
Lisosky says there are five questions any of us can ask ourselves to start critically analyzing what we’re receiving from any kind of media, from TV programs to news to highway billboards:
Who made this up? Think about who wrote the story, or paid for the ad, or made the film.
What strategies were used to get my attention? “If you can figure that out,” Lisosky said, “then you’ll have an idea of why you were watching this.”
How might someone else view this differently than I am viewing this?
What is the point of view of the sender?
Why are they motivated to send this message to me?
Here’s something to share with your friends in K-12 education: we are excited about the new media literacy grant program from the Washington’s Office of the Superintendent of Public Instruction. Grants of up to $25,000 are available for teaching teams representing school districts across Washington State.
October 21 is the deadline, but if you feel you’re not quite ready to submit a full proposal, here’s another option. Planning grants of $5000 are also now available.
Submit a planning grant by October 21st and you’ll be ready for the next grant round in spring 2020. All you need to do is assemble a small team of educators who would work together, describe briefly the idea on which your team will focus and outline the budget needed for up to $5000.
History was made this month when the Washington State Office of the Superintendent of Public Instruction (OSPI) announced its new media literacy education grant program, funded by recently passed legislation. The grant application package was released September 16, 2019.
The submission deadline is 4 p.m., October 21, 2019.
Grants will be awarded on a competitive basis to educational teams representing Washington’s K-12 system. Teams will be expected to develop and share openly-licensed curriculum unitsfocused on one of three subject areas:social studies, English language arts, or health. A unique feature of these units will be that they will be developed using a media literacy lens to address the content that is commonly considered in one of these subject areas.
Check out this link for a 30-minute recording of the webinar that explains the new grant program, the PowerPoint for the webinar, and a Q & A document.
Two Action for Media Literacy (AME) board members were recently contacted by The 74, a “non-profit, non-partisan news site covering education in America” and a “voice for the 74 million school-aged children in America.” They wanted to learn more about what’s happening in Washington State, the first state to adopt media literacy into law.
The 74 interviewed Michael Danielson and Shawn Sheller for the article “Media Literacy Is Literacy.” Michael is a high school teacher who teaches a required one-semester media literacy class, and Shawn is an elementary teacher-librarian technology integration specialist.
Shawn, when asked how she became involved and why media literacy is important, mentioned a lesson on media messaging where her elementary students talked about a local political race that called an opponent “Dr. Tax” in political ads. Real-life examples enrich and deepen lessons, and show the everyday need for students to be more media literate.
Adults mistakenly believe that students, growing up in a digital world, have the skills to critically analyze and evaluate what they read and view. The Stanford History Education Group has done important work with this study from 2016 that indicates media literacy for our “digital natives” is still a critical need.
Since 1991, AME has advocated for media literacy as a fundamental literacy skill for students of all ages.
Here’s How Educators and Lawmakers Are Working to Set Students Up for Success Online
Michael Danielson gives students in his ninth-grade media literacy class a simple piece of homework each night: Pay attention.
The assignment is meant to prod them into thinking critically about the countless messages that bombard them every day. They report back to their teacher and classmates at the start of each class with “media literacy moments,” explaining how they discovered hidden motives and attempts to manipulate them or sell them products.
Seeing his students apply five core concepts about media to what they see on Netflix, at the movies and online is Danielson’s favorite part of his job. It’s how he knows he has altered the way they consume media.
“I’ve changed them for life,” he said.
Danielson teaches at Seattle Preparatory School, a private Catholic high school. In addition to the required one-semester media literacy class, he teaches yearbook and theology classes and advocates for media literacy as chair of Action 4 Media Education, a Washington state-based group.
Media literacy is a broad term that encompasses a wide set of skills ranging from thinking critically about news and opinion articles to dealing with cyberbullying to creating and sharing content online. The idea of media literacy is not new, but experts say it gained new momentum following the 2016 presidential election.
Across the country, lawmakers, educators and advocates are working to elevate the issue of media literacy in legislatures and schools. Washington state has been at the forefront of the movement.
In 2016, lawmakers in Washington state passed a bill with bipartisan support that created an advisory council to study media literacy and make recommendations to the legislature based on its research. The following year, legislators passed a law — based on the council’s recommendations — requiring the state superintendent’s office to survey educators and district officials about the state of media literacy in schools across Washington.
Now, lawmakers are considering a bill that would provide grants for educators to create curriculum for media literacy and to allocate money for the state Department of Education to hold two conferences on the subject.
The initial Washington measure to create the advisory council is now the basis of a model bill used by Media Literacy Now, a nonprofit organization that advocates for media literacy, to help lawmakers get the topic on the agenda in their states.
Other states have taken their own approaches to making media literacy a priority, some more forcefully than others. For example, Californialawmakers passed a law that requires the state Department of Education to provide a list of media literacy resources on its website by July 1. In a stronger move, Minnesota in 2017added “digital and information literacy” to its required K-12 education standards.
For the rest of the article and a Media Literacy Legislation map tracking 15 bills in 12 states: The 74
URGENT: Educators are fighting to protect their library programs, and none more so than those in Seattle Public Schools. While WA State recently increased its education budget, it also restricted the levy funds local districts can raise. This means that Seattle cannot fully collect the funds it has already approved! The result is a $39M budget deficit in Seattle Schools, with over $12M of the deficit directed at school budgets. Librarians, nurses, and counselors bear the brunt of the cuts.
How can you help? Spread the word among friends, family, colleagues.
5 MINUTES: Write or call WA State legislator Reuven Carlyle or other members of the Ways and Means Committee to support SB 5313, allowing for levy flexibility.
The current political climate we find ourselves in could hardly be more divisive and confounding. One of the challenges for students and teachers in media literacy education is to evaluate this question: Has the media responded appropriately to the challenges of the Trump era? What do you think?
George Lakoff, a cognitive linguist and philosopher, is a leading expert on the framing of political ideas. In this article he offers concrete tools for the press to “evolve” in response to tactics that are being widely used.
His article from O Society:
Attacks on the free press, and constant lying by political leaders, aren’t just happening here in the United States. These tactics are also being used by authoritarian leaders in other countries who are taking power using the same tactics as Trump.
These leaders understand how the press works, and they use its own tendencies against it in their efforts to erode democracy and freedom. They lie, knowing the press will repeat the lies. They create distractions because they know the press will chase the distractions. They release bad news when they think no one is paying attention. Too often, these tactics succeed.
It’s time for the press to evolve. The press needs new rules, practices and guidelines to respond to the threat posed by lying authoritarians with no respect for truth, freedom, or democracy. These types of leaders attack the press because they see the truth as a threat. And it’s the job of the press to report the truth.
— Ban the lie from the headline/tweet/chyron. Repeating lies only spreads them, and spreading lies is a disservice to the truth. It’s possible to write engaging headlines without serving the lie. Always start with the truth, and always repeat the truth more than the lie.
— Use Truth Sandwiches. When writing about lies, always start with the truth first. Then explain the lie. Then return to the truth. Sequence and repetition matter! Truth first! Always.
— Separate News from Distractions. George Orwell said it best: “Journalism is printing what someone else doesn’t want printed. Everything else is public relations.” Trump’s tweets have become a constant obsession for reporters. But his Twitter dramas generally just distract from the important news stories crucial to democracy. He issues crazy tweets, calls people names, and includes silly typos because he WANTS people to talk about his tweet. And those who give him what he wants need to remember Orwell’s quote. What was the big story in the news before the Twitter drama started? Keep a steely focus on things that matter.
— Limit Trump photos. Images are crucial. Today, it seems like nearly every news story features a large photo of Trump. It’s all Trump, all the time. It’s a Trump overload. Editors need to be aware of the overall effect and make an effort to use a range of images to tell the story of our times. Politics is not just about the actors. It’s about the millions of people who are affected by those actions.
— Outsmart the “Friday Dump.” Politicians and corporations tend to release bad or unflattering news late Fridays, and especially on three-day weekends. This is because people pay less attention to the news at this time. So, the use of the “Friday Dump” is a tactic for hiding the truth from people. Imagine if anyone who tried this was instead greeted with a big Sunday or Monday story that also told people they were trying to hide the truth by dumping it on Friday.
A highlight of Media Literacy Week here at AME is the presentation of the Jessie McCanse Award, deemed the “Nobel Prize” of media literacy, to Marilyn Cohen, Saturday, Nov. 10. The National Telemedia Council (NTC) is recognizing Marilyn’s longtime contributions to media literacy, high principles and dedication. Four recipients this year include Henry Jenkins of Los Angeles, CA, Bill Siemering of Philadelphia, PA, and Carolyn Wilson of Ontario, Canada.
For the first time, the State of Washington has issued a proclamation to raise awareness of Media Literacy Education and commemorate the 4th Annual Media Literacy Week, which is observed locally, nationally, and internationally.
Educators, students, parents, and adult advocates invite you to participate in a week of student activities, discussions, idea sharing, and celebration of work that promotes media literacy in communities around the world as an essential life skill for the 21st century.
Media Literacy Week is hosted by The National Association for Media Literacy Education (NAMLE), with hundreds of organizations, schools, educators, partners, and supporters in the U.S. alone. See how you can participate!
Thank you to Governor Inslee and the Washington State Legislature for your continued support of media literacy education for students of all ages.
To download or view the proclamation, click on the image below or click here.
Media Literacy Week, November 5-9, 2018 — It’s less than a month away!
Media Literacy Week activities and events raise awareness about the importance of media literacy education for today’s students, and showcase the amazing work of educators, students, and organizations across the US. Now in its fourth year, Media Literacy Week is sponsored by the National Association of Media Literacy Education (NAMLE).
NAMLE has named Ethan Delavan, Action for Media Education (AME) board member, as Washington’s Media Literacy Week chair. AME is a NAMLE partner in this annual event.
From the website of the National Association for Media Literacy Education, NAMLE
Media Literacy Week is designed to bring attention and visibility to media literacy education in the United States. Inspired by Canada’s Media Literacy Week now in its 13th year, the National Association for Media Literacy Education leads the efforts to coordinate a media literacy week in the United States to showcase the work of amazing media literacy educators and organizations around the country.
The mission of Media Literacy Week is to highlight the power of media literacy education and its essential role in education today.
Whether you are an individual teacher, an employee at an organization, or a researcher, you can get involved with Media Literacy Week. Between November 5 and 9, plan your own Media Literacy Event for your community. It’s up to you to decide what you want to organize, but if you need help planning, feel free to reach out to email@example.com.
Some ideas to get you started:
Gather teachers for a professional development workshop
Organize a screening and panel discussion at your school or in your community
Create a film festival of youth media projects developed in your classroom
Take your students on a tour of a local television station
Host a webinar about news literacy
Partner with your local maker space and explore new forms of reading and writing with emergent technology
Explore a community issue and have youth come up with civically-minded creative solutions
Debate the ethical opportunities and challenges of what “free” or “private” means online
Share your plans with NAMLE and we will post your event on the Media Literacy Week website. Send us your logo and we will add you to the list of partners.
We hope you will be a part of the 4th Annual Media Literacy Week in the United States.
Professional journalists face more scrutiny in today’s crowded information marketplace because readers confuse them with bloggers and a cadre of online opinion scribes.
Journalism’s essence is a “discipline of verification,” according to Bill Kovach and Tom Rosenstiel of the American Press Institute. This means that journalists pursue verification of facts as the first order of business. If the journalists do not follow these standards, their careers and reputations are on the line.
Readers should understand there are important differences between professional journalists and everyday bloggers. Journalists are held to higher standards. They are required to get specific training through journalism degrees and are held to employment standards that ensure they serve their audiences by providing relevant and reliable stories that matter to their communities.
A new US study by Pearson has found that 60% of Gen Z kids prefer YouTube for learning over printed books, but still value “traditional” methods of instruction.
New field research by global education company Pearson has revealed that Gen Z kids in the US like learning from YouTube more than printed books.
Conducted for Pearson by New York-based global market research firm The Harris Poll, Beyond Millennials: The Next Generation of Learners surveyed 2,587 14- to 40-year-olds to examine the differences between Generation Z and Millennials in terms of their outlooks, values, education experiences and technology usage.
According to the study, nearly 60% of Gen Z respondents prefer YouTube for learning compared to 47% who prefer printed books. Millennials, meanwhile, prefer printed books (60%) over YouTube (55%).
Read more, with a link to the full version of the Pearson study at kidscreen
Increasingly, modern classrooms support group work and peer-to-peer collaboration. The science says that’s right on.
Dr. Patricia Kuhl: We use a social context to learn about the world. We learn from others by watching what they’re interested in, and we learn by collaborating with them and discovering their ideas. When I went to school, all the desks faced forward, theater seating, and the teacher was at the front. And learning was thought of as a one-way street between the teacher and the vessels, we were the vessels. Pour in the information, and everything’s gonna be good. But now we realize that learning has to be more interactive, and this notion that interactivity comes from a social context. So what does that say about classrooms? It says that kids ought to face one another, that circles, or U-shaped, or anything that gets kids looking at one another, interacting with one another. Also, classrooms that allow kids to move and regroup, that they come together in larger groups facing each other. They come together in small groups facing each other. They work one on one. Anytime in which students have access to one another and are allowed and encouraged to move and act on the knowledge, and create together, co-create, co-design, that’s the classroom that will be more successful than the face-forward, one-way street that many of us experienced when we were children.
This video is part of the Edutopia Brain-Based Learning series on researcher Patricia Kuhl’s work around learning and the social brain.
WordPress has taken down a handful alt-right blogs, according to several complaints from affected blog owners and readers who claim the sites were removed from WordPress.com, despite not being in violation of the company’s Terms of Service. Some site owners also said they were not notified of the shutdown in advance and have lost their work. The removals, we’ve learned, are in part due to a new policy WordPress has rolled out that now prohibits blogs from the “malicious publication of unauthorized, identifying images of minors.”
Yes, that’s right: the company has created a new rule to specifically handle the Sandy Hook conspiracists, and boot them from WordPress.com.
While some of the affected sites had already been flagged for other violations, many were hosting Sandy Hook conspiracy theories and other “false flag” content.