Want Your Child to Have Power Over the Media They Consume? Try Media Literacy!
What is News/Media Literacy?
It means understanding the content one receives in the correct context – a means of not just receiving and consuming media, but dissecting, understanding, and responding to it in a confident, educated manner.
What are the Steps of News/Media Literacy?
- What is the message that this News/Media conveys?
- Where did the media creator collect the information to make this media? What are their sources? Are those sources trustworthy and reliable?
- Who created this piece of media
- Whydid the media creator make this to convey this message? What were the creator’s motivations?
- When was this media created? Does the message this media conveys reflect the realities of my life? The lives of others? Whose reality does this message reflect?
- How do I want to respond to this media? Do I want to ignore it? Do I want to do more research on this topic? Do I want to create my own trustworthy media to counter or affirm it?
Next time you’re out with your child, or watching TV, or listening to the radio, try asking the questions above with your child about an advertisement you see or hear. A billboard, a commercial, a radio jingle… All of these advertisements trying to sell you things do so by convincing your brain that their information is trustworthy and reliable.
First, play SPOT THE ADS: Ask your children to identify all of the advertisements they see and hear – even peoples’ t-shirts may have ads on them.
When your kids get good at identifying ads, see if your kids can spot the deeper messages the ads are conveying and talk with them about how reliable the information is. Walk them through the media literacy process by asking the What, Where, Who, Why, When, and How questions!
Spot some crazy ads with tricky messages? Snap a picture and send it our way on social media with the underlying message you see. We love practicing and celebrating media literacy!
Give it a try!