Monday, June 11, 2012

Project Look Sharp–Free Media Literacy Lessons


Project Look Sharp, from Ithaca (NY) College, offers teachers a collection of media literacy lesson plans, along with training and support, to help integrate media literacy and critical thinking skills into any classroom. 

Their curriculum kits are available in 6 different categories and are searchable by content topic, media type, or grade level. (See screenshot, below) Materials are available for all grade levels, Kindergarten through College.


See videos about Project Look Sharp on their Vimeo Channel.

I took a few minutes to browse through the materials available, and I must say I was quite impressed. Units can be ordered in hard-copy with a phone call, or the can be downloaded in their entirety or one lesson at a time as needed. Many of the lessons I sampled included a Teacher’s Guide, a Student Worksheet, and an audio or visual media file of some sort (Power Point, Quick Time video, audio-only recording, etc.) Other lessons and units were much more extensive.  There were also links to Project Look Sharp’s YouTube Channel as well.

(BTW: Any project that teaches important skills with a clip of Peter Sellers' stellar performance as Dr. Strangelove has earned this History teacher’s vote!)

The materials are very well done, with links to sources, overviews of the units, etc., and very high-quality reproducible content. While the lesson plans lack notation of National Common Core State Standards addressed, the Lesson Objectives can help teachers connect the lessons to any subject area imaginable. The lesson plans themselves are detailed and very easy to follow, even offering slide-by-slide instructions on how to present the materials in the classroom.

Project Look Sharp would be an excellent resource to help teachers in any classroom assist students in decoding media messages and their influences on our society and in our daily lives.

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