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Media Education Lab


found in: social studies; 6-8; 9-12

Media Education Lab  provides free multimedia materials for 6-12+ teachers and students. Forty (to date) units cover making audios and visuals, propaganda, teen TV, copyright and fair use, Middle East, and more.

One unit, Assignment: Media Literacy, is an 18-unit cross-curricular program (social studies, language arts and health education), six units each for elementary, middle school, and high school. Download lesson plans and printables. Videos are included with each unit. Standards are listed.

The first unit of each level has exercises in asking the right questions. For example, the elementary Asking Critical Questions ( PDF, 1.2 MB, 24 pgs.). Five activities ask who is the author and what is the purpose, how do photos work, what catches a viewer’s attention, who is the target audience, and what has been left out? Teacher notes for an assignment and assignment rubric are included. The video includes still photos and TV ads to analyze. These would work well s models to be followed by those brought in by students.

Arguing that the best way to learn is by doing, Create to Learn lists free or low-cost tools for making podcasts, blogs, videos, gifs, infographics, and other media. Some discretion is required, especially in the social media section. Chirbit lets users record audio and upload it to a website. Free registration is required. Links to three other tools designed for iPhones and Androids are also provided. With Sharalike, users can share slideshows that are automatically created with recent photos when the app is opened. With Pencil2D create simple drawings and animations. Moovly is free video animation software. WordPress is easy to use and makes content look polished. Infogram lets students makes interactive pie, line, and bar charts and more complex visualizations.

A Companion Website to Create to Learn: Introduction to Digital Literacy has a design studio and separate learning sections for students (9 chapters) and teachers (15 chapters).

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