POLITICAL CARTOONS: OPINIONS IN PICTURES!

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1 POLITICAL CARTOONS: OPINIONS IN PICTURES! pre-visit activity minutes SOCIAL STUDIES + OBJECTIVES Students will read the history of the 1991 Persian Gulf War. Students will use this information to create a political cartoon. Students will explore how the media can affect public opinion. MATERIALS Access to the Internet Drawing paper, pens, pencils, etc. A variety of political cartoons from newspapers OR from: PROCEDURE 1. Bring to class a number of political cartoons. Many current national cartoons can be copied from: or they can be cut from local newspapers. 2. Discuss the purpose of political cartoons. (Political cartoons cut to the essence of a political problem or point of view, often satirizing something or someone.) Discuss the points of view displayed by the cartoons you have passed out to students. 3. Ask students to go to: printable/section.asp?id=13&sub=1 and read the pages giving the history of the wars with Iraq. If your students do not have access to the Internet, pages can be copied and given to students. 4. When finished, ask students to use the information learned on the website to prepare a political cartoon about some issue about which points of view differed during one of those conflicts. This cartoon should show one side of a political point of SOCIAL STUDIES STANDARDS SS5H9 The student will trace important developments in America since 1975 a. Describe US involvement in world events including efforts to bring peace to the Middle East, the collapse of the Soviet Union, Persian Gulf War and the War on Terrorism in response to September 11, STANDARDS ELA5LSV2 The student listens to and views various forms of text and media in order to gather and share information, persuade others, and express and understand ideas. Critical Component: The student listens to and views various forms of text and media in order to gather and share information, persuade others, and express and understand ideas. b. Evaluates the role of the media in focusing attention and in forming an opinion. PAGE 1

2 POLITICAL CARTOONS: OPINIONS IN PICTURES! pre-visit activity minutes SOCIAL STUDIES + PROCEDURE (CON T) view that could have been published at that time. Ask students to consider the cause and effect of events when deciding on their cartoon. 5. When the cartoons are finished, display under the title: Political Cartoons - Opinions in Pictures! CLOSING Explain to students that their field trip to CNN is coming up soon. They will see and can watch a video about a Humvee, now located in the lobby of CNN, that was used by embedded CNN journalists during the war in Iraq. CNN journalists, along with journalists from other news organizations, reported on that war. Professional journalists hold to a code of ethics that requires truthfulness, accuracy, objectivity, impartiality, fairness and public accountability in the gathering and reporting of news. Because journalists are people, and people form opinions, impartiality could be a challenge to practice. Opinions expressed on television, in newspapers, magazines and political cartoons can all impact public opinion. Ask students to watch 2 or 3 television news broadcasts, including CNN broadcasts, for at least a half hour before going on the field trip. Students should decide if each news organization whose broadcasts they viewed could be considered a source of impartial news. Ask students to support their answer based on what they saw during that half hour. L.A. STANDARDS (CON T) ELA5R1 comprehension and shows evidence of a warranted and responsible explanation of a variety of literary and informational texts. Critical Component: For informational texts, the student reads and comprehends in order to develop understanding and expertise and produces evidence of reading that: e. Distinguishes cause from effect in context. g. Makes perceptive and welldeveloped connections. Discuss the following issues: 1. Why it is important to have an impartial news source? 2. Would it be problematic to have public opinion shaped by a news organization if it had a specific point of view or agenda? 3. Is an editorial different from a presentation of the news? How? PAGE 2

3 POLITICAL CARTOONS: OPINIONS IN PICTURES! pre-visit activity minutes SOCIAL STUDIES+ GIFTED CONNECTION Ask gifted students to think of one issue at your school (such as a problem on the playground, behavior at lunch, etc.) Ask students to write a short article about the problem in an objective way and to write an editorial about the same issue. For the editorial, students may choose to include their own opinion, but the opinion must be supported by facts. ASSESSMENT 1. Assess your students ability to use the information read on the Internet and use that information to create a reasonable political cartoon. 2. Informally assess each student s thought process during the discussion outlined in the closing section of the lesson plan. PAGE 3

4 WHAT A GREAT IDEA! pre-visit activity - 2 sessions / 60 minutes each OBJECTIVES Students use reading skills to aquire information and use that information to produce a persuasive piece of writing. Students will evaluate what elements make a successful piece of persuasive writing. MATERIALS Access to the Internet and a printer Paper/pencils/pens PROCEDURE 1. Explain to students that the trip to CNN is coming soon. 2. Tell students: The people we see reporting from the news desk on CNN each day are called anchors. They are reporters who work with a production team that seeks out news stories, writes them, and delivers them to us daily. Anchors are chosen based on their ability to report the news, but they all have different backgrounds and past experiences in reporting different news stories and events. Tell students that they are going to a web site located at: reporters/ On this site are links to stories about the backgrounds and experience of all of the anchors seen on CNN. Choose the CNN tab at the right of the screen and choose at least four or five anchors to read about. 3. Next, students will chose one anchor and use the information given on his/her web page to construct a persuasive argument. The student will take the position that the anchor chosen is working for CRN (Class Room News) and is trying to launch a new show that he/she has developed about the lives of children throughout the world. This show will be called, The Children Will Lead Us and will highlight how children are helping to shape world events. Students should choose the anchor who they STANDARDS ELA5C1 understanding and control of the rules of the English language, realizing that usage involves the appropriate application of conventions and grammar in both written and spoken formats. The student: a. Uses and identifies the eight parts of speech. f. Uses and identifies correct mechanics and correct sentence structure. ELA5LSV1 The student participates in studentto-teacher, student-to-student, and group verbal interactions. The student: c. Responds to questions with appropriate information. f. Displays appropriate turn-taking behaviors. h. Offers own opinion forcefully without domineering. i. Responds appropriately to comments and questions. j. Volunteers contributions and responds when directly solicited by teacher or discussion leader. l. Clarifies, illustrates or expands on a response when asked to do so; asks classmates for similar expansions. PAGE 4

5 WHAT A GREAT IDEA! pre-visit activity - 2 sessions / 60 minutes each PROCEDURE (CON T) believe has the background and experience to put such a show together, and to provide a convincing argument for putting the resources of CRN into such an endeavor. The piece should be written in the first person, as though they were the CRN anchor they have chosen. 4. When finished, ask students to read the piece to the class. 5. Discuss with the class what types of things made a persuasive case for the anchor involved. What types of things did not? Ask how the information in the anchor s background helped or hindered their argument for the program. Discuss how this relates to cause and effect. 6. Display the written pieces on the wall, with the heading, What a Great Idea! 7. As a follow-up lesson, ask students to go through the papers displayed and choose one paper to read that they did not write. Students should use this paper to list 3 main ideas contained in the paper and at least one supporting detail for each main idea. ASSESSMENT Use the piece written to determine the ability of students to present a solid case when trying to persuade. Assess if students used appropriate information from the website that would support their argument. GIFTED CONNECTION Allow gifted students to decide what type of show their anchor is interested in presenting to the head of CRN, as well as its title. Students must use the information contained in their anchor s work history to determine and support the idea for the show. L.A. STANDARDS (CON T) ELA5LSV2 The student listens to and views various forms of text and media in order to gather and share information, persuade others, and express and understand ideas. ELA5R1 comprehension and shows evidence of a warranted and responsible explanation of a variety of literary and informational texts. Critical Component: For informational texts, the student reads and comprehends in order to develop understanding and expertise and produces evidence of reading that: a. Locates facts that answer the reader s questions. e. Distinguishes cause from effect in context. f. Identifies and analyzes main ideas, supporting ideas, and supporting details. g. Makes perceptive and welldeveloped connections. PAGE 5

6 WHAT A GREAT IDEA! pre-visit activity - 2 sessions / 60 minutes each L.A. STANDARDS (CON T) ELA5W2 competence in a variety of genres. Critical Component: The student produces a persuasive essay that: a. Engages the reader by establishing a context, creating a speaker s voice, an otherwise developing reader interest. b. States a clear position in support of a proposal. c. Creates an organizing structure appropriate to a specific purpose, speaker s voice, an otherwise developing reader interest. b. States a clear position in support of a proposal. c. Creates an organizing structure appropriate to a specific purpose, audience, and context. f. Excludes extraneous details and inappropriate information. g. Provides a sense of closure to the writing. h. Raises the level of language using appropriate strategies (word choice). PAGE 6

7 RESPONDING TO TERRORISM post-visit activity minutes SOCIAL STUDIES + OBJECTIVES Students will construct a persuasive argument based on a written text. Students will present their argument in front of the class. MATERIALS Access to the Internet Poster board/art materials (optional) PROCEDURE 1. Review the recent field trip to CNN. Discuss with students the importance of the news in keeping citizens informed. 2. Discuss the ways your students are aware of that are meant to defend the U.S. against terrorists. Ask students to read Terrorism: A War Without Borders from the U.S. Department of State The document can be printed for use in the classroom: organization/45696.pdf 3. Ask students to choose one approach to fighting terrorism, presented in the section Responses to Terrorist Activities Can Include (pg. 7) and to construct an argument to defend their position that it is the most effective approach. 4. Allow students to make posters, graphs or other visuals to use during their argument. Further research may be needed to support their choice. 5. Once students have constructed their arguments, allow them to individually present their argument to the class. 6. When finished, ask students to vote on which argument was most persuasive. Discuss why this argument worked well. SSOCIAL STUDIES STANDARDS SS5H9 The student will trace important developments in America since 1975 a. Describe US involvement in world events including efforts to bring peace to the Middle East, the collapse of the Soviet Union, Persian Gulf War and the War on Terrorism in response to September 11, PAGE 7

8 RESPONDING TO TERRORISM post-visit activity minutes SOCIAL STUDIES + CLOSING Discuss with students the elements of a persuasive argument. What particular strategies used during the presentations were especially useful to the argument? Once all arguments have been presented, ask students if they would now change their opinion of which strategy might be best to fight terrorism. GIFTED CONNECTION Ask gifted students to evaluate the effectiveness of terrorprevention efforts that have been implemented in the U.S. airports. Ask students to critique the effectiveness of these methods and create an interesting way to present what they have learned. ASSESSMENT 1. Assess the oral argument to ascertain the students ability to construct a good persuasive argument. 2. Informally assess the discussion outlined in the closing section of the lesson. STANDARDS ELA5W2 competence in a variety of genres. Critical Component: The student produces a persuasive essay that: a. Engages the reader by establishing a context, creating a speaker s voice, and otherwise developing reader interest. b. States a clear position in support of a proposal. c. Supports a position with relevant evidence. d. Creates an organizing structure appropriate to a specific purpose, audience, and context. e. Addresses reader concerns. f. Excludes extraneous details and inappropriate information. g. Provides a sense of closure to the writing. h. Raises the level of language using appropriate strategies (word choice). PAGE 8

9 WHERE CAREERS BEGIN post-visit activity - 60 minutes OBJECTIVES Students will write a short paper about an experience involving a potential career. The student will go through the writing process. MATERIALS Transcript of Kyra Philips talking about her interview with Dr. Seuss in the fifth grade. PROCEDURE 1. Ask students if they already know what they would like to do as a career when they grow up. Ask them what event in their life made them interested in this career. 2. Ask students to think back to the video at the end of the tour featuring different anchors describing how they became interested in becoming a reporter. Kyra Philips, who is an anchor on CNN, discovered what she wanted to do in fifth grade. Either show the video here, or pass out the transcript and read together. 3. Ask students to think about something in their life that caused them to think about a career related to the incident. This might be related to a pet, something in school or any other event or experience they might have had. 4. Ask students to write a short paper about the experience and how it made them think about a career related to that incident. If students have not had an experience that made them think about a specific career, ask them to write about a career they think would be interesting and why. Remind students to use prewriting, revising and editing before handing in their writing. STANDARDS ELA5LSV1 The student participates in studentto-teacher, student-to-student, and group verbal interactions. The student: b. Asks relevant questions. c. Responds to questions with appropriate information. h. Offers own opinion forcefully without domineering. i. Responds appropriately to comments and questions. k. Gives reasons in support of opinions expressed. ELAW1 The student produces writing that establishes an appropriate organizational structure, sets a context and engages the reader, maintains a coherent focus throughout and signals a satisfying closure. The student: a. Selects a focus, an organizational structure and a point of view based on purpose, genre expectations, audience, length and format requirements. b. Writes texts of a length appropriate to address the topic or tell the story. ELA5W2 competence in a variety of genres. PAGE 9

10 WHERE CAREERS BEGIN post-visit activity - 60 minutes CLOSING Discuss with students the importance of choosing a career that they feel would be of great interest. Often these interests start in childhood. Children who like to draw might become artists. Those who love to write stories may become a famous authors. Discuss the difference between choosing a career based on an interest or passion, and one chosen because of the amount of money they would be paid. What are the pros and cons of choosing a career by either of these methods? GIFTED CONNECTION Ask gifted students to interview a number of people in different professions about how they either chose or ended up in that profession. This may involve phone or personal interviews with businessmen, political representatives, and other people of interest. When finished, ask students to decide, based on the responses to the interviews, what the most important element appears to be that determines the selection of a specific profession or job. ASSESSMENT Use the written piece as assessment. Collect the first draft as well as revisions and edits to see how students are changing their original writing through the use of the writing process. L.A. STANDARDS (CON T) ELA5W2 Critical Component: The student produces a narrative that: a. Engages the reader by establishing a context, creating a point of view, and otherwise developing reader interest. c. Creates an organizing structure. ELA5C1 understanding and control of the rules of the English language, realizing that usage involves the appropriate application of conventions and grammar in both written and spoken formats. The student: a. Uses and identifies the eight parts of speech. f. Uses and identifies correct mechanics and correct sentence structure. ELA5W4 The student consistently uses a writing process to develop, revise and evaluate writing. The student: a. Plans and drafts independently and resourcefully. b. Revises manuscripts to improve the meaning and focus of writing by adding, deleting, consolidating, clarifying, and rearranging words and sentences. c. Edits to correct errors in spelling, punctuation. PAGE 10

11 TRANSCRIPT worksheet 1-A kyra phillips speaks Believe it or not I knew I wanted to be a reporter. When I entered elementary school, I got this idea to start a newspaper and I told my principal that I wanted to do it and he was all for it. So I tried to figure out who would be the best first interview. And I knew that my friend in theater class - her dad was a piano tuner - and I remembered that she mentioned to me that he tuned Dr. Seuss piano in La Jolla, California (I grew up in San Diego). So I thought, okay, that would be the perfect first interview because I always loved Dr. Seuss. So I said, Hey, can I come home with you one day and maybe I can find his phone number and call him up? So she brings me home to her house after drama class one day and I started looking through her dad s Rolodex. And I was looking for Dr. Seuss. And she said, No, no, no. I think his name is something else Like Theodore Something -Geesel, Geisel. And I said okay, let s look for that. And so I was thumbing through the Rolodex and boom, sure enough, there it was. Of course, I always knew him as Dr. Seuss I didn t know his actual name. So I wrote down his phone number. And I called him up and explained who I was, what I was wanting to do, and if I could interview him for the first interview for the newspaper. And I remember there was silence on the other end of the phone - Who is this? How did you get my number? And I was just honest with him and explained the whole situation. And believe it or not, he ended giving me, oh, I think maybe five or 10 minutes, max. So that was my very first interview. And I was hooked from that moment on. I also knew I wanted to be a reporter because I loved to write. And I loved to experiment. And I kept it all in a book, in folders. And through the years I just started working on my skills more and more until finally in elementary school I had the idea to start a newspaper. I love my job because I wake up everyday and I never know what s going to happen - I never know whether there s going to be breaking news or there s going to be some type of amazing story I m going to get to tell. I mean, every single day I come in with this wonderment, and curiosity, and excitement. And I know I m going to leave a better person, a smarter person - maybe a more inspired person. And I look for that. I don t always just wait on the day. I look for it, as well. And it just gives me a reason to wake up and come into work and know that I m going to do something unique. Kyra s bio: PAGE 11

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