Showing posts with label web literacy. Show all posts
Showing posts with label web literacy. Show all posts

Thursday, August 22, 2019

Bad News - Interactive Simulation Shows Students How Misinformation is Spread

Bad News is a website that offers simulations that show visitors how misinformation is spread through social media. Bad News is available in two versions. The regular version is intended for those who are high school age or older. Bad News Junior is appropriate for middle school and older elementary school students. The difference between the two versions is found in the news topics that are used in the simulations.

In both versions of Bad News players work through a simulation in which they attempt to build a Twitter following by spreading misleading news stories. (I must emphasis that there are no real Tweets sent and you don't have to even have a Twitter account to play Bad News). Through the simulation players learn how headlines, memes, and Tweets are designed to manipulate people and prompt reactions from them. The simulation also shows players how Twitter bots are used.

There are six distinct sections of Bad News. At the end of each section players are awarded a badge signifying that they have learned about the manipulation techniques associated with trolling, impersonation, discrediting, polarizing, emotional manipulation, and conspiracy theories.

Bad News does offer a short guide, in the form of this PDF, to using Bad News Junior in your classroom.

As I played the game and then researched the developers I couldn't help but think, "am I fall for a fake?" Despite learning about the game from a trusted source, Larry Ferlazzo, I still did my own research to make sure that Bad News wasn't an elaborate ploy to get people to participate in the spread of a game that was bad news. It all seems to be on the up and up.

Friday, April 8, 2016

Mozilla Releases an Interactive Web Literacy Map

I was recently contacted by the Mozilla Foundation with news about their recently released interactive guide to teaching web literacy. Mozilla's interactive web literacy map is based on three main components of web literacy; reading, writing, and participating. Each of those elements is linked to smaller, supporting components. Clicking on any component of Mozilla's interactive web literacy map will lead you to a definition for that component.

Mozilla's web literacy map is a handy guide to basic definitions of web literacy and the map does a nice job of showing how all of the components are connected. The real value of the web literacy map is found when you click into Mozilla's web literacy teaching activities.

Mozilla's web literacy teaching activities page contains eighteen sections offering dozens of lesson on everything from basic web literacy like protecting privacy on the web to advanced topics like writing Javascript. There is even a section of lessons designed for teaching web literacy in classrooms in which not every student has access to a computer.

Applications for Education
Mozilla's web literacy teaching activities page offers lessons suitable for use with students of all ages. Should find that the lessons are too difficult or too easy for your students go ahead and modify it to fit your needs. Mozilla offers some tools that you can use in building and sharing your own web literacy learning activities.

Additional web literacy resources that I have reviewed for elementary school settings.  
Additional resources for teaching web literacy to middle school and high school students. 

Thursday, March 15, 2012

SideVibe Eliminates Premium Plans

Last fall I wrote about SideVibe, a service designed to help you build lesson plans around web content. At the time that I wrote my review, SideVibe was offering a "premium" version for $5.99/ month that allowed teachers and students to converse about the content in closed feedback loops. Last week I received an email informing me that SideVibe is no longer charging for that service.

Embedded below is an overview of SideVibe.

Applications for Education
SideVibe could be a helpful tool when teaching students to evaluate the validity of information found on websites. By using SideVibe you could take a fake website like and build an evaluation lesson around it.