Fake News, Real Consequences

While there is great power in education, neither teachers nor librarians alone can address issues of fake news and mis- and dis-information. Traditional methods of evaluating information haven’t kept pace with speed and volume of information that is coming at us every day. This addresses questions of civic and information literacy among students in short, easy to absorb, active sessions to better prepare students to critically engage with their information environments. Classroom teachers in grades 5-12 can choose any of the lessons from the menu below, in order to tailor information to topics they might be covering in class. Each lesson involves active learning and is scheduled for roughly 45 minutes. Lessons will be modified by grade level and aligned with Common Core State Standards.

  • Show Me the Money: Why Do We Have Fake News in The First Place?
  • Around the World In 30 Seconds: How Fake News Spreads (And How to Stop It)
  • I Know What I Believe and I Believe What I Know: Unpacking Cognitive Bias
  • This Video Will Make You SO MAD: Emotions and Fake News
  • “I Know You Are, But What Am I?”: Ad Hominem Attacks
  • Selena Gomez Wants to Sell You A Coke: Sponsored Content in Social Media
  • What No One Will Tell You in School: How Not to Read A Website
  • If 5000 Phones in China Like This, You Will Too: The Business of Bots and Likes
  • You Won’t Believe What Happens Next: Clickbait, Headlines, And Trusting the News
  • Sharks in The Streets: How to Spot A Fake Image

Edwards and Heckert are also available to consult with teacher librarians about ways to incorporate civic literacy skills into their programs.

Presenter Bio

Katie Heckert brings 15 years’ experience working with children from Kindergarten through High School. She holds a BA in Elementary Education (University of Montana, 2017), a certification in grades K-8, and is licensed in the state of Montana.

Julie Edwards brings 15 years’ experience as a librarian in public and academic libraries. She has an MS in Library & Information Science (University of Illinois, 2005) and has worked, published and presented internationally on issues related to librarianship and information.


Julie Edwards

Katie Heckert