News Media Influence Teacher Resources

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New Review Election Report

If it is an election year and you're teaching American government, then you'll definitely want to take a look at this project. Class members will research a chosen candidate and create a profile for him/her, then collect and analyze newspaper articles, create a slogan, and conduct polling outside of school to get an understanding of how many people will be heading to the polls come election day. 
Just how much influence did television have on the results of the 1960 presidential election? Media critics contend that the results were all about how the two candidates appeared on the screen. Give your young historians a chance to make their own assessment. Class members read and annotate a transcript of the first Kennedy and Nixon debate and decide who they believe won. They then compare audio and video recordings of the debate and reassess their ruling. The highly detailed plan includes links to all required materials. 
Students examine media coverage of George W. Bush's refusal to answer questions regarding past illegal drug usage in the 1999 campaign. They consider the role of rumor, scandal, audience and relevance in political media coverage.
Students examine the economic and political challenges the past six presidents have faced during their terms of office, and how those challenges may or may not have impacted their chances for re-election. They create campaign slogans both for and against the presidents researched in class based on the economic and political climate at the time of their elections.
Students explain the impact that the media may have in shaping their intellectual and emotional responses to current events. They examine broadcast and Web-based news sites to find subtexts through the use of language, audio, and visual elements.
Students analyze the media products and advertising techniques used in political campaigns. In this elections lesson, students view political debates and then work in groups to find examples of types of advertising techniques used in political ads they view on the Internet. Groups present their findings to the class. Students design a political advertisement as the summative assessment.
Students consider the historic implications of Barack Obama's election. In this election of 2008 lesson, students research Obama's accomplishments and determine how his election signifies the success of the American Civil Rights Movement. Students also consider the role that race may have played in the election and write essays about their findings.
Students investigate the role of money in American elections. In this current events lesson, students read and discuss articles that address money and political campaigns. Students may conduct further research on the topics presented in 2 suggested inquiry projects.
High schoolers list some changes in presidential election laws and/or procedures since 1796, and cite examples from presidential campaign materials from 1824.
Students examine Abraham Lincoln's political views about slavery. In this American Civil War lesson, students determine how Lincoln's beliefs led to the restriction of slavery in American territories. Student also analyze the party platforms presented in the election of 1860. Students complete activities where they analyze documents, correspondence, and speeches to better understand Lincoln's actions and the election.
What comes to mind when learners think about campaign financing? They watch a video (linked) about the fundraising climate during the 2012 presidential election and discuss Super PACs and Supreme Court legislation as a group. Scholars focus on rhetorical device by listening to famous speeches and completing a graphic organizer on persuasive techniques. Next they view four Super PAC ads and complete an analysis of what they see. In a well-formed paragraph, researchers synthesize conclusions based on one of the ads. A rubric is included, and all worksheets are separated into middle school and high school levels. The informational text and resource links here are invaluable.
High schoolers identify various forms of media used in a political campaign and compare the different formats as vehicles for distributing political messages. They analyze the effectiveness of candidate's uses of different media.
Students research and analyze polling data in journalism. They discuss reasons that polling data is included in media coverage of presidential elections.
Young scholars explore the results of the 2000 presidential election. They look back at important issues in the campaign and write newspaper articles which cover specific angles on the election.
Students examine the direct role played by George W. Bush in the 2004 election campaign. They compare these campaign conditions and tactics with those in the 1992 presidential election, and present information in the form of a Powerpoint slideshow.
Students research the 2000 presidential elections. They explain why the presidential winner was initially too close to call, discuss how the winner was determined and predict how the 2000 election might change the process of electing a president.
Eleventh graders examine the election of 1800.  In this American Government lesson plan, 11th graders summarize the events that made the election controversial.  Students advocate for a candidate during a short role playing session. 
When did political propaganda start? How many types of propaganda are there? Kids are asked to analyze the various types of elections and election propaganda that voters see each year at election time. They compose an essay describing each type of propaganda and commonly used propaganda techniques. This is a five-day instructional activity that includes multiple resource links, standards, and adaptations; overall a great instructional activity.
Students identify facts about the structure of the California recall election. They research the history of recall elections throughout the United States. They analyze the positives and negatives of a governor recall election.
Eighth graders explore the impact of exercising voting rights. In this election lesson, 8th graders research the importance of voting and use technology tools to share their findings about national, state, and local election campaigns.

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