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Point of View/ Bias Detection Lesson


Social Studies Lessons for High School is designed for social studies teachers to use with their government and history courses. It was developed in response to a shift in education throughout our country: a move away from rote memorization and toward the critical thinking skills necessary for many of the new performance assessment programs.

Each lesson will enable teachers to teach seven specific critical thinking skills in a step-by-step process. The information has been adapted for old media and new media formats. Web sites will be provided that will allow teachers to choose the most appropriate resource for the selected activity. All selections can be copied for classroom use. Teachers may adapt activities to allow students to complete assignments via the web.

Robert O. Black is a social studies teacher at the Harbor City Learning Center, and former Teachers Network web mentor.


Introduction


This lesson is included to ensure that students can identify the point of view and detect any bias in an information source. Have students practice frequently with the template using print material as well as data located on the following web sites:

Sample Web Sites

Baltimore Sun Paper

San Jose Mercury News




The lesson plan and sample student response sheet were developed to match:

Standard
Students will analyze legislation designed to protect the rights of individuals and groups and promote equity in American society.

Indicator 
Students will recognize bias, vested interests, stereotyping, manipulation, and misuse of information.

Below is an editorial on juvenile crime that students will use in this lesson. Make an overhead transparency or individual student copies.

EDITORIAL:  It's time to stop playing with these kids! Times have changed and the nature of the crimes has become more serious. Many more juveniles are committing crimes today than ever before. Juveniles who commit these heinous crimes should pay the appropriate price. After all, the misbehavior and truancy of yesterday are not the same as the drug use and murder of today. No matter what the age, if you do the crime you should do the time.

 

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