When I was at the Rhode Island School Librarians meeting, discussion focused on this surprising question, Are there any other resources besides those from Common Sense Media for teaching media literacy?” Using the UnConference format, we generated a list of resources. This short list of curriculum lessons includes resources created at the Media Education Lab plus other great lessons that are aligned with the theory and practice of media literacy and the pedagogies we value.

All Learners

  • Digital and Media Literacy lesson plans from MediaSmarts Canada offers a great array of engaging activities for K-12, all subject areas.
  • Digital Literacy Framework from Teaching Tolerance offers K-12 lessons on assessing information, online search, privacy, copyright and activism.
  • Media Lit Kit. This classic overview, from the Center for Media Literacy, helps learners of all ages understand and apply critical questions for analyzing all forms of media.

Lower Elementary

Upper Elementary

  • Media Literacy 101. Created by MediaSmarts Canada, these videos with lesson plans introduce learners to the key concepts of media literacy.
  • Learn how to activate film analysis using movie trailers in this resource from the UK
  • Discuss violence in sports and gender representations in these lesson from MediaSmarts Canada for Grades 3 – 7.
  • Explore materialism and consumer culture with Grades 3 – 7 using lesson plans from The Cinematheque Education program in Vancouver, Canada
  • Google and iKeepSafe created an online game, Interland, with the Be Internet Awesome lessons on digital citizenship and Internet safety.
  • My Pop Studio is an interactive game for children aged 9 – 14 media literacy. Lesson plans which can be used with or without the game), explore topics like celebrity culture, how songs are made, gender stereotypes in media, pros and cons of multitasking, and more.

Middle and High School

  • English
    • We love Frank Baker’s Close Reading of Media Texts book; some additional web resources are also available here
    • English teachers can activate film analysis and creative production skills using resources from Shakespeare on Film from the UK’s Film Study Space
    • From the Media Education Lab, Mind Over Media is an online gallery of contemporary propaganda and 6 lesson plans on defining propaganda, locating it in news and entertainment, understanding virality, sponsored content and the ethics of propaganda
  • Library/Media
    • Explore issues of media ownership with this lesson for Grades 9 – 12 from MediaSmarts Canada.
    • Above the Noise. From KQED, these short videos jumpstart great discussions and promote inquiry learning that connects classroom to culture.
    • Mozilla’s Web Literacy curriculum offers project-based learning activities to advance digital and media literacy competencies
    • Created by the Media Education Lab, Internet: Indispensible or Evil? offers 4 lessons for discussing the rise of the Internet and digital culture using clips from Adams Ruins Everything
    • From PBS Student Reporting Labs, 10 flexible lessons explore broadcast journalism through analysis and production activities
  • Social Studies
  • Health/Wellness
    • The Media Straight Up! Created by the Media Education Lab for use in health education, these 12 lessons explore positive and negative messages in media, music, media and drug abuse, and producing a public service announcement.

College Students and Adults

  • Crash Course, Media Literacy. A video series introduces viewers to the theory of media literacy.
  • Created by Germany’s DW Akademie, this lesson plan book for trainers  offers practical activities to support adult learning in media and information literacy.
  • Create to Learn Online offers lessons for exploring nine forms of media that students can use to create media, including blogs, images, infographics, podcasts, animations, vlogs and screencasts, videos, remix, and social media.
  • Understanding Copyright from the Media Education Lab helps adults understand legal fundamental of how copyright and fair support digital learning
  • YouTube Creator Academy offers online course modules that help you understand the creative, legal and business practices of successful YouTubers.

For Teachers




Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s