Media Savvy Tips — For KIDS

1. Start a news journal.

Keep a daily journal and write down how many hours of television news you watch a day, and on what channels. Do the same with newspapers and the Internet. After a week, your journal will show you what habits you have formed for getting your news.

2. Let your journal show you your news habit.

Using your news journal, take the total hours of news you watched or read over the course of seven days, and divide by seven. That will give you the average amount of time you spend each day with news. Now, use your journal to see how much time you spent watching TV news or reading newspapers or online news. Use the same formula you used for finding your daily average of news hours to find the average time per day you spend reading and compare it to the amount of time you spend each day watching television news.

3. Create a healthy news diet.

Now that you can see how much news, and what kind of news, you feed your brain, you can create a better news diet. This will help you develop your reading skills, improve your vocabulary, teach you about current events, help you understand people and cultures – the list goes on! More importantly, a healthy news diet will help teach you to think for yourself and become better at solving problems. Here’s how to have a healthy news diet:

·        Spend more time reading news than watching TV news. Newspapers give you important details you won’t find in TV news. TV news gives you more recent news than what you read in newspapers.

·        Get your news from many places. Don’t read one newspaper or watch all your TV news on the same channel. Ask your parents to help you with this.

·        Talk to your family, friends and teachers about what’s in the news. Sometimes, news can be sad or even scary. It’s important to talk about the news you are taking in, because it is helping you to form opinions. In fact, it helps to shape how you think and how you view the world.

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