In this lesson you will examine fake news and media bias and equip your learners to be critical consumers of media.
Ask the learners what media they consume. Discus why they choose these kinds of media and what is the reputation of the media they have chosen. How do they know the media is reliable?
Tell the learners that they are going to read this text: The Media, Bias and Fake News
Ask them to write down 5 things they think will be mentioned in the text.
Tell the learners to read the text and see if their predictions were correct.
Pair check, then class check of their predictions.
Ask the learners to reread the text and summarize each paragraph, and underline any words they do not know.
Check the learners’ comprehension of the text by checking their summaries and explain/discuss any new words.
Ask the learners to research the examples given in the text. Did the author of the text represent the situations correctly according to other sources?
Discuss the ideas in the second part of the text.
- Do they agree with the author?
- Can they think of litmus test questions to find out general bias in individuals and institutions?
- What kinds of questions do they think they should ask about a particular text as they read it?
There are a number of ways of extending this lesson, for example ask the learners to find a text about a topic they are interested in and then prepare a poster about the text and the author/publisher of the text using the Matrix ideas from the text.
Or you could discuss and explore related issues like the role of fact checkers and the question of who watches the watchers (Quis custodiet ipsos custodes?), and censorship.