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Unpacking Fake News

An Educator's Guide to Navigating the Media with Students

Wayne Journell Rebecca Klein Jeremy Stoddard

176 pages
Teachers College Press
Since the 2016 presidential election, the term fake news has become part of the national discourse. Although some have appropriated the term for political purposes, actual fake news represents an inherent threat to American democracy given the ease through which it is consumed and shared via social media. This book is one of the first of its kind to address the implications of fake news for the K–12 classroom. It explores what fake news is, why students are susceptible to believing it, and how they can learn to identify it. Leading civic education scholars use a psychoanalytic lens to unpack why fake news is effective and to show educators how they can teach their students to be critical consumers of the political media they encounter. The authors also link these ideas to the broader task of civic education and critical engagement in the democratic process. Book Features: Provides historical and contemporary perspectives on fake news. Describes how students’ social media habits make them prone to sharing false information. Details research describing how students fail to recognize fake news. Examines how misinformation impacts classroom discussion of social issues. Offers research-based instructional strategies for helping students become aware of, and responsive to, fake news.
Author Bio
Wayne Journell is associate professor and secondary education program coordinator at the University of North Carolina at Greensboro. He currently serves as editor of Theory & Research in Social Education and is a past recipient of the Exemplary Research in Social Studies Award from the National Council for the Social Studies (NCSS).