Forests toolkit #3 – How is the debate on forests portrayed by the media?

Author(s)

Helen Forsgren, Ulrika Nohlgren, Lina Varg, Christina Ottander and Jenny Hellgren

Institution(s)

Umeå University

The aim of this activity is to enable students’ engagement in meaningful science-society interaction and the development of critical thinking competence in the area of “Forest use vs. Forest Protection”. It enables students to gain insights into the work and considerations of a journalist and highlight core aspects which distinguish journalism from opinion-makers with different agendas. At the same time, students gain insight into local forest-related issues.

Age

  • 15
  • 16
  • 17

Topic

  • Forest use Vs. Forest protection

Duration

  • Between 1-2 hours

Students’ resources

A journalist from local media is invited to meet with the students. In preparation, students get familiar with a piece of local media content on a forest-related theme selected by the journalist in collaboration with the teacher. For example, they can be assigned to reding a topic-related and recent newspaper article.

After writing a short reflection, the meeting with the journalist takes place. During the in-class activity, students have the opportunity to engage with the journalist by reflecting on the article and asking questions about forest-related media issues in particular and journalism in general. 

Teachers’ resources

Teachers’ resources to conduct the activity include a guide for choosing appropriate media outlets, planning a meeting with a journalist and encouraging reflection among the students.