Technology is at our fingertips and it’s everywhere that we go. It’s what we are seeing on TV and it’s on digital media through our phones / tablets. On an average a day, I check my email at east 4-5 times during the day (twice at night). I check my social media/ news media in the morning, at lunch, after work and prior to bed.
My work email is mainly about my students and announcements for the school that I teach at. Once in a while (somehow) I will get an email that I won a cruise or that I have received money from a long lost relative who I have never met / known. When I receive these odd emails (from weird and long address’) I of course am critical of who the messenger is and why they are making contact with me….and of course offering me free trips & money.
I try to teach my own kids and my students to be critical of what’s out there. To really look and investigate. Asking critical questions like: who was the author of the information / email I received. Why is this person trying to gather my personal information?
What’s even more scary….is that marketers have become smart at manipulating consumers of all ages. Making us have unconscious guilt, and even a self-conscious about certain products. As educators and parents, it’s important that we teach / deconstruct messages and media that are trying to trick us and others.
The personal strategies that I use when analyzing fake news of media is the following: Who is the author of this information? What are they trying to tell or sell? What techniques is the author using to gain my attention? Are they using images enticing words? How will others (youths and adults) understand this information differently from my point of view? Why is the information being shared? What are the real reasons of why it’s being shared? Use sites to check and see if news is real as suggested in class like www.snopes.com
I really like Luke Braun’s post as his video on media literacy as these are great reminders for our students in the classrooms. Furthermore his suggestion from the Web literacy website is another great learning / teaching tool. Fact checking is also super important as there continues to be a lot of problems online and in the media with fake news.
Kids and sometimes even adults cannot critically evaluate what they are seeing and reading. As Alec mentioned in class, sometimes fiction can be more interesting than the truth. This is why it is so important to teach kids / adults on how to be media literate and critical of the information that is out there.