Fake News

How do you know if something is real or just made up?

"Recent research has found that students are not equipped with the necessary skills to differentiate between real and fake news. Now more than ever, media literacy is a critical skill for students to develop as they navigate multiple forms of media regularly." (From NewsELA).

Learning Objectives:
Students will learn about "fake news." Students will learn why "fake news" exists and why it is pervasive in social media. Students will develop a criteria to identify "fake news."

Questions to think about:

Why does it matter?

Fake News Finale 2019



Just a few of the times Jennifer Aniston was going to have a baby...
I found that Ms. Aniston should have given birth to some two dozen babies in the last few years. According to OK! alone, she has acquired up to 15 kids since 2013, having been pregnant nine times — twice with twins! — while also adopting a third set of twins. 
From "The Tabloid Myths of Jennifer Aniston and Donald Trump" by Jim Rutenberg, New York Times, Jan 27, 2019.



Thinking Critically About Your News from Newsela:


Why is this important?

It can be made up, or it might be bias. Why does this matter?


Media 4.0 chart

YouTube Video





Fact Checking Sites:








Lesson #2 for both 5th and 6th grade:

Not a New Problem:
The following articles outline a fraudulent letter written in 1775.  



This unit began with a NONFICTION picture book, Giant Squid by Candace Fleming. Many students were so interested to learn more about the elusive giant squid they continued their "research" and wondering at home. More than one student shared fake or hoax news stories about the giant squid with me, prompting me to develop this webpage and the fake news challenge (which is a work in progress).

Lesson #1 for 5th grade:
Giant Squid
Story #1 Monstrous Radioactive Squid On California Beach (Grindtv.com)


Giant Squid

posted Dec 22, 2016, 11:25 AM by Susan Wells WW Library
Several classes are reading this thrilling nonfiction picture book that I expect to win a Sibert Award (best nonfiction for children). Some resources to accompany this book can be found here:

After the break will use this as a jumping off point to talk about FAKE NEWS... Stay tuned for more information but be aware there are a lot of hoaxes (fake claims and photos) on the internet around this mysterious beast. Check out this example:
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