There has been a lot of talk lately about “fake news” because it has been particularly prevalent during the recent 2016 Presidential election campaign. According to a recent Pew Research Center study, 62% of Americans get their news from social media sites and 44% get their news specifically from Facebook. Nearly 90% of millennials regularly get news from Facebook. In addition, a recent study from Stanford University revealed that many teens have difficulty analyzing the news; 82% of middle school students surveyed couldn’t tell the difference between an ad labeled “sponsored content” and a legitimate news story.
This lesson provides an opportunity for students to learn what fake news is, differentiate it from other types of news (including satirical, misleading and tabloid news), develop strategies for spotting fake news and consider what can be done about the proliferation of fake news.