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Lesson Plan

Critical Media Literacy: TV Programs

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Critical Media Literacy: TV Programs

Grades 6 – 8
Lesson Plan Type Standard Lesson
Estimated Time Four 45-minute sessions
Lesson Author

Laurie A. Henry, Ph.D.

Laurie A. Henry, Ph.D.

Lexington, Kentucky


International Literacy Association


Student Objectives

Session 1

Session 2

Session 3

Session 4


Student Assessment/Reflections



Students will

  • Analyze portrayals of different groups of people in the media

  • Investigate social values presented in the media

  • Analyze portrayals of teenagers in the media

  • Identify stereotypes presented through the media

  • Investigate television's influence on personal and societal values

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Session 1

Use the following guiding questions to help generate a discussion about media literacy:

  • What is the media?

  • How does the media make you feel?

  • Has any information you received from the media ever angered you? Made you feel really good?

  • Do you feel represented in the media (i.e., race, sex, age, talents, strengths, weaknesses, background, ethnicity)?

  • Who is visible and who is invisible within the media?

  • Are there certain issues or groups of people represented more often than others in the media? Why do you think this is the case?

  • Do you think the media stereotypes certain people? Who? How?

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Session 2

During class, view the videotape of a popular television program. Model the media observation activity by stopping the video to discuss various components of the activity included on the activity sheet.

Give students the Media Observation sheet. For homework, have students view a television program and complete the questions on the observation sheet.

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Session 3

Discuss the findings from the students' media observation activity. Rate programs that students viewed on a scale of 1-3.

3 = realistic

2 = somewhat realistic

1 = unrealistic

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Session 4

Give students the Media Awareness Scavenger Hunt sheet. Students should complete activity items 1-12 by logging on to the media awareness website using the Web address provided on the activity sheet.

For homework, have students complete the writing activity at the bottom of the Scavenger Hunt sheet.

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  • Students share the TV programs they developed with the class

  • Students perform skits based on the TV programs they developed

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  • Student participation in discussions

  • Student participation in activities

  • Media observation activity

  • Scavenger hunt activity

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