Some of the key social justice concepts addressed by these lessons include
- the meaning and impact of stereotypes;
- the impact of unequal representation and access;
- the effect of biased messages about how to view ourselves and others; and
- the importance of developing independent voices as activists.
Some of the key language arts skills addressed by these lessons include
- using oral and written language to express a point of view;
- putting words and images together to comprehend a cohesive message;
- considering an author or a creator’s purpose in conceiving a specific text; and
- synthesizing information from a variety of sources.
Each lesson addresses three specific essential questions. In addition to these, the series asks students
- What is the purpose of advertising?
- How can we ‘read’ advertisements actively and critically?
- What are stereotypes, and how can we work to fight against them?
- What is representation, and why is it important?
- What is the relationship between advertisements and fairness or justice, and how can we play a role in this relationship?
Part One: Introduction
Students discuss the purpose of advertisements and their relationship to social justice.
Students construct strategies for reading advertisements critically to use in other lessons.
Part Two: Advertising and Stereotypes
Students learn about stereotypes and examine how advertising can influence them.
Students analyze advertisements that perpetuate stereotypes.
Students will create advertisements that fight against commonly held stereotypes.
Part Three: The Issue of Representation
Students discus representation and why it matters in advertisements.
Students analyze how some groups are over-represented in advertisements (and how some are excluded).
Students consider how advertisements represent families.
Students debate diversity in advertisements.
Part Four: Bias in Advertising
Students examine the messages advertisements send about people who are different.
Students develop strategies to view advertisements without succumbing to biased messages.
Part Five: Advertising Activism
Students write letters to advertisers.
Students design and create a social justice advertising campaign.
These activities address the following standards using the Common Core State Standards for English Language Arts.
CCSS: R.1, R.2, R.3, R.4, R.5, R.6, R.7, R.8, R.9