IN YOUR FAMILY, DINNER HAS ALWAYS COME WITH A SIDE ORDER OF POLITICS.
You talk about who’s running for office, what different people in the government are doing and how they should do it better. That’s just how it’s always been. Main course. Dessert. Politics.
Mom’s a Democrat and Dad’s a Republican, so your family has the two main American political parties covered. Because they support different parties, your parents tend to see things differently… which can lead to some pretty heated debates. Whatever the news of the day is, they tend to see it from opposite sides. This can be fun for you and your sister, Becky – “Hey Mom, while you’re passing the new healthcare plan, could you also pass the potatoes?” Other times, you and Becky just roll your eyes up to the sky. You don’t always want to hear about the latest tax proposal – sometimes you just want another slice of meatloaf!
Lately, both of your parents have started using a new phrase that you’ve also seen online – it’s called “fake news.” It’s basically a way of saying that something in the news is total nonsense and not actually real. You’ve started wondering about this “fake news” business. Is something “fake news” simply because you don’t agree with it? Or is there a way to tell the difference between what’s fake and what’s real?
Tonight you went online to do a little research. Learning about “fake news” led to learning about something called “propaganda.” The article you read said that while facts are made up of information that can be proven with evidence, propaganda is information that’s aimed at people’s emotions. The idea behind propaganda is to convince people to feel a certain way about an issue – maybe even to believe something that isn’t true, like whether taxes should go up or down or whether a country should go to war.
After doing your research, you were left wondering – how does propaganda target your emotions?
Investigate the primary sources related to American labor laws. Do the people who created these sources target your emotions (as propaganda usually does) and if so, how? Make your case.
Have your students take this challenge and make their case! To begin, send your students to this website with this challenge’s code.
The idea behind propaganda is to convince people to feel a certain way about an issue - maybe even to believe something that isn’t true.