Propaganda and Spin

This Propaganda and Spin lesson plan also includes:

The propaganda devices used by politicians' spin doctors can successfully change minds and shift public opinion. A timely resource asks class members to examine how these devices are used to influence the way citizens think about an issue. After reading primary source documents, analyzing campaign ads, and researching political figures, individuals take on the role of a political figure's communication director and produce their own spin on a current event.

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CCSS: Adaptable
Instructional Ideas

  • A great teacher resource is All the President's Spin by Fritz, Keefer, and Nyhan; while focused on the spin of George W. Bush's team, the work of other presidential spin teams is also examined
  • Have groups select a politician and/or a the reporting of a new outlet and examine the degree to which spin is used in the comments
Classroom Considerations

  • Many of the materials are outdated; however, the concepts and activities are sound and the materials could be replaced with more current examples
  • The fifth in a series of 7 related resources

  • The 13-page resource includes a detailed plan, activities, primary source documents, and assessments

  • Some of materials are dated and would need to be updated