Navigating the current pandemic requires that young people acquire an increasingly complex set of skills, such as understanding statistical data, evaluating the credibility and truthfulness of health information, analyzing the risks and benefits of a particular treatment or vaccine, and interpreting test results. An essential skill in 2021 is health media literacy.
Let’s PLAY Checkers
Rather than simply disregard information as “fake news” media literate individuals are empowered as “critical thinkers and makers, effective communicators and active citizens.” Translation: They actively engage with the media and information ecosystem by adopting the mantra: When in doubt, check it out. Folks at the COMM+MEDIA Research Collaboratory have curated a short list of fact checking web sites that will help kids and adults alike locate truth in popular news stories in the areas of politics, economics, science, and health. A game of fact checkers, anyone?
Critical Media Health Literacy
Just when I think cultivating healthy kids and healthy schools is too much of an uphill battle, I am inspired by young people (and the adults in their lives) like Zach Maxwell who understand what it means to be both