DESMA X 481.20
Brief description of lesson plan
This lesson focuses on understanding disinformation and propaganda techniques.
Students are sometimes tempted to incorporate internet sources without appropriate
evaluation and review. This lesson focuses specifically on helping students recognize
disinformation and propaganda. (Primary and secondary sources + evaluation of sources
= will be addressed in a different lesson)
English 1B - Advanced Composition (Argument and Critical Thinking course)
At the end of this lesson, students will be able to:
Understand strategies used to share disinformation
Understand propaganda techniques
Recognize these techniques in action
Teacher Preparation & Lesson Activities
The students will read The Circle over a series of classes. While the students read The
Circle, they will also create disinformation campaigns for the world of The Circle. The
game, Bad News, will be used as part of the introduction to this project. The teacher will
help facilitate student understanding and timing as they work on the projects. The
teacher will bring supplies (including markers and newsprint paper) and suggest web site
Description of how lesson will assess student learning all of the objectives
The students will present their disinformation campaigns for assessment. Disinformation
campaigns will require uses of multiple kinds of propaganda techniques as well as plans
for communicating this disinformation.
The Circle book
Bad News information sheet (Links to an external site.)Links to an external site.
Bad News game (Links to an external site.)Links to an external site.
propaganda techniques (assigned reading from our textbook, Practical Argument)
Academic Content Standards
From English Department Documents
Student Learning Outcome: Demonstrate mastery in evaluating, integrating, and
English 1B Syllabus CONTENT (Scope and Description of Content):
Examination of logical fallacies, rhetorical devices, advertising and propaganda, devices
that distort and conceal meaning, and media influences
What will occur:
Toward the end of the semester, each team will have time to present their campaigns.
Each group will have a week to decorate my office door with their disinformation
campaign. They will also include a museum style analysis piece to help viewers
understand the types of disinformation being used. (An announcement of next
semester's class and the use of the same book - The Circle will also be provided.)
Pairs of students will play the Bad News game and identify various disinformation
dissemination strategies used during the game.
Using information from the Bad News game, each student pair will prepare a report of
suggested disinformation strategies for use in an upcoming disinformation campaign for
Before the class ends: Pairs will share their reports with the Communications program
(the entire class).
Student Preparation: Students will prepare for class by individually reading from the
course textbook about propaganda techniques and iogical fallacies; each student will
prepare a second report (similar to the Bad News disinformation report) about
propaganda techniques and logical fallacies.
In-Class: Students will sign up for Disinformation Campaign teams. In these small
groups (of approximately three to five students), the teams will share their out-of-class
work and review their Bad News notes from the previous class session.
As the semester continues:
Students will design disinformation campaigns and will then present these campaigns as
further discussed below.
This will take place over a series of weeks as the students read the book and identify
propaganda in action during the book. This will be one of a series of projects that we are
working on at the same time. The students will use dialectical responses and other
critical reading strategies (Links to an external site.)Links to an external site. to help
them consider connections between The Circle and propaganda/disinformation.