Resources for Integrating Media Literacy In the Social Studies Classroom
compiled by Frank Baker

Recommended curricula/text resources:

Teaching The News (from PBS Newshour) click below




Teaching Difficult History through Film (Paperback) book cover Teaching History with Film: Strategies for Secondary Social Studies, 2nd Edition (Paperback) book cover
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using film in the ss

Lesson Plans/Articles/Websites:

Digital History’s Film Resources  The Branding of America (Library of Congress) Through primary source documents from the American Memory collections, this activity introduces students to a sampling of “famous” American brands originating in communities across the United States and offers insight into their origin and staying power.

How History is Depicted In Film:   a curriculum resource designed to assist educators develop critical viewing skills in their students as they incorporate historically set films into their coursework; equipping students with the necessary tools to dissect elements of the film including the historical facts, story and perspective represented.

Movies no place to learn real history (MSNBC)

Using Photography to Tell A Story (NCSS)

“Incorporating films into a history classroom: a teaching note.” (Teaching History: A Journal of Methods ,Spring 2008)

Media construction of presidential campaigns (Nov/Dec 2007 Social Education)

Using Editorial Cartoons to Teach History

“It makes you think more when you watch things”: scaffolding for historical inquiry using film in the middle school classroom. (The Social Studies July-August 2007)

Teaching students about civil rights using print material and photographs (The Social Studies July-August 2007)

‘Toonin’ into History: Online Collections of Political Cartoons (May/June 2007 Middle Level Learning ,NCSS)

Going Digital In The Social Studies (Social Education, April 2007 issue)

Fighting the Civil War with Primary Resources (School Library Media Activities Monthly)

American Advertising-A Brief History (History Matters)

The Media & Social Justice (Lesson Plans)

Historical Literacy: Reading History through Film  (Social Studies, Jan/Feb 2006 Vol.97 Issue 1)

Using Docudramas To Teach History (The Social Studies, Jan/Feb 2005)

Fostering Historical Thinking With Digitized Primary Sources

Writing about history using moving images

Scripting the Past: Exploring Women’s History Through Film

SOCIAL STUDIES Intermediate Grades 3-5
You Want Me to Sell What? The Many forms of advertising (lesson plan)

Media Literacy and the Teaching of Civics and Social Studies at the Dawn of the 21st Century
(AMERICAN BEHAVIORAL SCIENTIST, Vol. 46 No. X, Sept. 2004 1-9)

Cartoons for the Classroom       Teacher Guide to Daryl Cagle’s Cartoon Website

Article: Weapons of Mass Distraction: Media Literacy, Social Studies & Citizenship

Examining Media Coverage: A Classroom Study of Iraq War News (Social Education, May/June 2004)

American History Through Feature Films: A Middle School Unit (2003)
(Film & History, Vol. 33.2, 2003)

Movies as the Gateway to History: The History and Film Project.
Weinstein, Paul B., The History Teacher 35.1 (2001): 57 pars. 1 Jul. 2002

Democracy and Media Literacy

View Smart to Vote Smart- curricula and lesson plans

Strategies for Integrating Media Literacy into Social Studies

A Picture’s Worth- Analyzing Historical Photographs In The Elementary Grades by Keith C. Barton,
Social Education, 65(5), pp.278-283, September 2001

The Mass  Media and the Education of Students in a Democracy: Some Issues to Consider,
The Social Studies, Nov/Dec. 1999

When Work Is Done: Using Photographs as Primary Sources

Scripting The Past: Exploring Women’s History Through Film

Understanding the Kosovo Crisis: A Lesson in Media Literacy

Texts (see also new texts)

Celluloid Blackboard Teaching History with Film

Everything You Think You Know About Politics…and Why You’re Wrong, Kathleen Hall Jamison

The Press Effect: Politicians, Journalists, and the Stories That Shape the Political World, Kathleen Hall Jamison

Packaging the Presidency: A History and Criticism of Presidential Campaign Advertising Kathleen Hall Jamison

Hail to the Candidate- Presidential Campaigns from Banners to Broadcasts  Keith Melder

American History on the Screen: A Teacher’s Resource Book on Film and Video. Written by Wendy S. Wilson
and Gerald Herman. Publisher: J Weston Walch; ISBN: 0825120004; (December 1993)  This reproducible book
is ideal for teachers who want to choose films appropriate to the study of U.S. history and help their students
develop critical viewing skills. It provides specific materials for use with thirteen outstanding films, as well as
bibliography, feature films index, introduction to historical films, glossary and film analysis guide. 

Media & Politics, International Journal of Harvard Institute on Media & Public Policy

Warp Speed  America In The Age of Mixed Media, Bill Kovach and Tom Rosenstiel

Out of Order,  Thomas E. Patterson

The Mass Media Election-How Americans Choose Their President, Thomas E. Patterson

The Unseeing Eye- The Myth of Television Power in National Elections, Thomas E. Patterson & Robert D. McClure

Deciding What’s News-A Study of CBS, NBC, Newsweek, Time
Herbert J. Gans

Unreliable Sources: A Guide to Detecting Bias In News Media
Martin Lee, Norman Solomon

How to Watch TV News       Neil Postman, Steve Powers

Image as Artifact: The Historical Analysis of Film & TV
John E. O’Connor

American History/American Television   Interpreting the Video Past
Edited by John E. O’Connor

Online & Print Magazine & Newspaper Articles

Seeking truth in the social studies classroom: media literacy, critical thinking and teaching about the Middle East  (Social Education  Jan/Feb 2006)

“Reel to Real: Teaching the Twentieth Century with Classic Hollywood Films.”
(Social Education, May/June 2005)

News for a new generation: can it be fun and functional? (Mar 2005)

Visual Imagery and the Art of Propaganda, Mary Burns and Danny Martinez,
Learning & Leading With Technology magazine, Volume 29, No. 6, March 2002 pp. 32-35,52-53

Political Communication Via The Media, Nola Kortner Aliex, Stephen S. Gottieb, Eric No. ED440427 (2000)

Getting The Point: Studying Editorial Cartoons In The Third Grade (NCSS web site)

A Picture’s Worth: Analyzing Historical Photography in the Elementary Grades (NCSS web site)

Media Literacy In A Global Age (NCSS web site)

Media Literacy: Required Reading for the 21st Century, Robert Kubey
The High School Magazine, April 2000, pp. 29-33

Law & Pop Culture: Teaching and Learning About Law Using Images from Popular Culture
Social Education 64(4) pp.206-211

Media Literacy: A Must for Middle School Social Studies
Mary Hepburn;   Clearing House, July/August 1999

Image. Power. History     Richard Reeves, New York Times, July 25, 1999

War In The Dark. Why WWII Is So Difficult to Get Right On The Screen-And The Movies Do it Best
American Heritage,  February-March 1999

Using Media Literacy to Explore Stereotypes of Mexican Immigrants
Social Education, 62 (7), 1998  page 407

Democracy At Risk: Building Citizenship Skills Through Media Education
Renee Hobbs

Theatre of War: The Real Story Behind Mathew Brady’s Civil War Photos

Integrating Film and TV Into Social Studies Instruction-ERIC document

Plugged Into The Past    Robert Toplin    New York Times, August 4, 1996

Propaganda to Mobilize Women for WWII
Social Education, February 1994

The Smell of Celluloid In The Classroom- Five Great Movies that Teach
Social Education, February 1994

Using Newspapers to Study Media Bias, Joseph M. Kirman, Social Education, 56(1) 1992, pp.47-51

The Media’s Role in Political Campaigns, Stephen S. Gottlieb, ERIC No. ED346527 (1992)















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