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Photo by Franco Antonio Giovanella via Unsplash

Database Provider

Authors

Project Look Sharp, Brian Goodman & Sox Sperry

Grades

3rd, 4th, 5th, 6th, 7th, 8th, 9th, 10th, 11th, 12th, AP® / College

Subjects

Science, English Language Arts, Visual and Performing Arts

Resource Types

  • Activity - Classroom, 30-60 minutes
  • Videos, 2 minutes, 16 seconds
  • Lesson Plans
  • Worksheets

Regional Focus

Global

Format

PDF, Downloadable MP4/M4V

What's So Funny about Climate Change? Editorial Cartoon Opinions

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Synopsis
  • In this media literacy activity, students will analyze six climate change-related editorial cartoons and discuss how each cartoon conveys a different message. 
  • This resource includes a lesson plan, a student activity, a student handout, and a video clip. 
Teaching Tips

Positives

  • The lesson plan includes discussion questions for several academic subjects.
  • Students will enjoy interpreting the messages in the editorial cartoons.

Additional Prerequisites

  • The video was made in 2015, so the narrator references an "upcoming" UN Climate Change Conference that took place in 2015, resulting in the Paris Agreement.
  • Teachers must create a free account to access the materials.
  • This handout will help students understand how to analyze media messages.

Differentiation

  • Visual arts classes could use this lesson and then have students create editorial cartoons.
  • English language arts classes could use this activity in a lesson on symbolism, irony, hyperbole, or metaphors.
  • Other resources on this topic include this video on using doubt to keep people from believing in climate change, this video on how to talk to climate change deniers, and this podcast episode on Americans' opinions on climate change.
Scientist Notes

There is no contradiction in the resource; the cartoons illustrate the human impact on climate change. This resource is recommended for teaching.

Standards
  • Next Generation Science Standards (NGSS)
    • ESS3: Earth and Human Activity
      • MS-ESS3-4 Construct an argument supported by evidence for how increases in human population and per-capita consumption of natural resources impact Earth's systems.
  • College, Career, and Civic Life (C3) Standards
    • Dimension 2: Geography
      • D2.Geo.9.6-8 Evaluate the influences of long-term human-induced environmental change on spatial patterns of conflict and cooperation.
    • Dimension 3: Developing Claims and Using Evidence
      • D3.3.6-8 Identify evidence that draws information from multiple sources to support claims, noting evidentiary limitations.
    • Dimension 4: Communicating and Critiquing Conclusions
      • D4.4.6-8 Critique arguments for credibility.
  • Common Core English Language Arts Standards (CCSS.ELA)
    • Reading: Informational Text (K-12)
      • CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.RI.9-10.8 Delineate and evaluate the argument and specific claims in a text, assessing whether the reasoning is valid and the evidence is relevant and sufficient; identify false statements and fallacious reasoning.
      • CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.RI.11-12.5 Analyze and evaluate the effectiveness of the structure an author uses in his or her exposition or argument, including whether the structure makes points clear, convincing, and engaging.
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