Teaching Resource

Adversmarts: Understanding Food Advertising Online

By Ethan Anderson, written for MediaSmarts Last updated 2024/05/27
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This instructional content is tailored for educators guiding students through the lesson, equipping them to explore online advertising, understand marketers’ strategies, and engage critically in media literacy discussions. During the session, students grasp online advertising concepts, observing how marketers create immersive digital environments for children. After studying advertising techniques, students participate in an educational online game, “creating” a website for the fictional cereal Co-Co Crunch. They then analyze natural commercial environments, identifying common “weasel words” used by advertisers.

Curriculum Connection

A1. Transferable Skills A2. Digital Media Literacy A3. Applications and Contributions
This lesson aligns with the Ontario Language Curriculum as students embark on a comprehensive journey to understand immersive online environments and their commercial objectives, particularly concerning food product websites. Through this exploration, students develop the skills to identify website purposes, intended audiences, and associated advertising elements, fostering media literacy (A1.1). They grasp digital and media text forms, enhancing their analytical abilities (A2.4) and engaging in innovative problem-solving with digital tools (A2.6). This cross-curricular approach extends learning beyond this context (A3.1), fostering practical application. Furthermore, students delve into strategies marketers employ to engage children online and gain awareness of the Internet's commercial nature. This lesson cultivates media literacy, critical thinking, and practical proficiency, all aligning effectively with the curriculum's goals.
Grade(s): 2 3
Topic(s): ComprehensionMultimodal Literacy

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