"Tell me and I forget. Teach me and I remember. Involve me and I learn"
Fake News! Fake News!
Posted On April 7, 2021
In my EDTC 300 class, we discussed fake news. We participated in a game where we had to decide if accounts are trolls or not. I was surprised when I got a majority of them wrong. I have heard many times, never trust what you see on the internet, so I was expecting myself to be able to get all of the troll accounts right. From this class, I have learned how to maneuver and identify fake news. Now I have the obligation to teach my future class about digital literacy and how to combat fake news. However, I need to remember my own biases and how they can come into play with fake news. As stated above I was quick to believe that I would be able to recognize fake news, but I was not. This showed me bias can be integrated into any aspect that is presented to me. “Why Do People Fall for Fake News?” covers the idea of biases being one of the reasons people fall for fake news. They cover implicit and confirmation bias. Implicit biases are where individuals have the tendency to trust people that would be considered in the same group as themselves. Confirmation bias is where people believe posts, news, and articles that uphold their own personal beliefs. I have personally fallen victim to both of these biases and I want to remember that I need to keep my biases out of the classroom.
Digital Literacy in the Kindergarten
I have mostly worked with younger students, from the grade range of kindergarten to grade four. For my internship, I worked in a kindergarten classroom, so I thought I would give my take on how I can integrate discussions about digital literacy and fake news on the internet. Integration of digital literacy is mainly considered for older grades that are already participating in social media. I think that for kindergarten the decision would not be on how to use the internet and interact, but to recognize how to be safe while on electronic devices.
From the article, “How do we teach students to identify fake news?”, the authors address different ways that educators can discuss fake news with students. What stood out to me was how they ended the article. They said that “it is critical that students are taught to approach the world around them with a healthy sense of skepticism to avoid being misled, duped, or scammed,”. This is what I believe is the main importance of teaching about digital literacy and fake news. Students need to have a great understanding of what is wrong and right. However, over the internet, there can be misleading information that can confuse individuals on which is right or wrong. For kindergarten, I would address the safety concerns of being on the internet and how to approach them. For example, strangers over the internet. Most times students receive the stranger danger talk about interacting with strangers face-to-face and do not discuss strangers over the internet.
Fake news would be a harder topic to cover in kindergarten, but not impossible. This discussion would surround the idea of not believing everything on the internet. You could even complete a lesson about analyzing images or websites from the internet. I would personally make my own crazy headlines/articles and go through them with students. Since most students in Kindergarten are at the beginning stage of reading, they would rely heavily on the images. In the article “What’s News: Fake, False, Misleading, Clickbait, Satire, or Carefully Reported?“, the author states that one part of being critical possibly misleading information is to analyze the picture. I would create unrealistic headlines and let the students think about if the picture fits the headline as a possible lesson about fake news.
I thought I would include some Kindergarten outcomes that could be used to discuss safety and digital literacy.
USCK.2Establish behaviors that support the safety of self and others (including safety at school and at home).
APK.1Demonstrate, with guidance, initial steps for developing basic health habits, establishing healthy relationships, supporting safety, and exploring “self”.
Develop the language with which to wonder and talk about safety.
Recognize “safe” and “unsafe” behaviours and situations (e.g., taking turns, wearing weather-appropriate clothing, playing in designated areas, walking alone).
Examine what to do if the safety of self or others may be/is jeopardized (e.g., tell a trusted adult, leave, plan ahead).
Practise healthy habits related to:exploring “self”healthy choicesplaying safely at home or at schooldeveloping relationships.