Fake news. The term seems to be everywhere these days.  What is fake news?  Fake news refers to false information or propaganda published under the guise of being authentic news.  Why do we care about fake news in regards to our K-12 students? A recent report by researchers at Stanford University found that “young and otherwise digitally savvy students can be easily duped.”

The Newseum in Washington, D.C., provides six basic questions students and teachers should be asking as they are vetting a story.

  • Who made this report?
  • How is the information sourced?
  • Why was this report made?
  • When was this report made?
  • What is this report missing?
  • Where do I go from here?

Schools are starting to go the extra mile and provide students with hands-on lessons about discerning between what is trustworthy and what isn’t.

Janelle Hagen, a middle-school librarian at Lakeside School in Seattle, teaches fifth-graders and eighth-graders information-literacy skills.  “It’s our job as teachers to address what’s going on in the world,” Hagen told The Seattle Times.

Should Idaho’s teachers consider helping their students tell the difference between “real news” and “fake news”?

References cited:

Stanford Graduate School of Education: Stanford researchers find students have trouble judging the credibility of information online

Newseum Ed: Believe It or Not? Putting the Consumer’s Questions to Work

Seattle Times: Librarians take up arms against fake news

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