Introduction and Table of Media Literacy ActivitiesWhat is Media Literacy?1. Foundations of the United States Political SystemExploring Democracy in Social Media Policies and Community StandardsMaking the Internet a Public UtilityLocating 21st Century Female STEM InnovatorsUnpacking Media Coverage of the RoyalsEvaluating Representation of Native Americans on Film and in Local History Publications2. The Development of United States GovernmentPromoting a Declaration of Independence on Social MediaMarketing and Regulating Self-Driving CarsExploring Representation of and Racism Toward Black Americans in the MediaInvestigating Political Debates Through Songs from Hamilton: An American MusicalTweeting the Bill of Rights3. Institutions of United States GovernmentAnalyzing Political Films About the Branches of GovernmentWriting an Impeachment Press ReleaseExploring How Members of Congress Use Social MediaUnderstanding Public Opinion PollsDesigning a Website for a New Political Party5. The Constitution, Amendments and Supreme Court DecisionsMaking Media For and Against ProhibitionExploring and Promoting the Equal Rights Amendment with Social MediaExamining News Stories and Advertisements from the Civil WarInvestigating Representations of Gender and Race on CurrencyTweeting For and Against the Equality ActReading Dissents AloudDebating Cameras in the Courtroom6. The Structure of State and Local GovernmentAnalyzing Native American Mascots and LogosWriting a Constitution for the InternetExploring the Use of Media for Military RecruitmentEvaluating Your Privacy on Social MediaEvaluating State Government Use of Media during the COVID-19 PandemicInvestigating Gendered Language in Media Coverage of Women in PoliticsDesigning Environmental Campaigns Using Social MediaAssessing Trusted Messengers During the COVID-19 PandemicCampaigning for State Office on Social MediaAdvertising the Lottery Online and In PrintAdvising Local Governments' Use of Social Media7. Freedom of the Press and News/Media LiteracyContextualizing Press FreedomExamining the News from All SidesBeing an Investigative JournalistAnalyzing News Photographs & Newspaper DesignUncovering Reporters' PerspectivesEvaluating Recommendation AlgorithmsDetecting Fake NewsConducting a Critical Visual AnalysisInterpreting Memes and TikToks as Political Cartoons

Contextualizing Press Freedom

Journalists and citizens have faced restrictions on the Freedom of the Press throughout United States history. Freedom of the Press is considered one of the most important American rights. Yet according to the World Press Freedom Index, the United States ranks 45th among 180 countries in terms of press freedom.

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In this activity, you will act as an expert advisor tasked with helping the U.S. improve its World Press Freedom Index ranking. 

Activity: Improve the United State's World Press Freedom Ranking

Additional Resources:  

Connecting to the Standards

  • Massachusetts Civics & Government Standards
    • Explain why freedom of the press was included as a right in the First Amendment to the United States Constitution and in Article 16 of the Massachusetts Constitution; explain that freedom of the press means the right to express and publish views on politics and other topics without government sponsorship, oversight, control or censorship. (Massachusetts Curriculum Framework for History and Social Studies) [8.T7.1]
  • ISTE Standards
    • Knowledge Constructor
      • 3a: Students plan and employ effective research strategies to locate information and other resources for their intellectual or creative pursuits.
      • 3d: Students build knowledge by actively exploring real-world issues and problems, developing ideas and theories and pursuing answers and solutions.
    • Creative Communicator
      • 6a: Students choose the appropriate platforms and tools for meeting the desired objectives of their creation or communication.
      • 6b: Students create original works or responsibly repurpose or remix digital resources into new creations.
      • 6d: Students publish or present content that customizes the message and medium for the intended audiences.
  • DLCS Standards
    • Digital Tools (DTC.a)
    • Collaboration and Communication (DTC.b)
    • Research (DTC.c)
  • English Language Arts > History/Social Studies Common Core Standards
    • CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.RH.11-12.2
    • CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.RH.11-12.7