Online resources for Project Look Sharp’s “Media Constructions of Presidential Campaigns” curriculum updated – just in time for election season

ITHACA, NY- October 3, 2016- Online resources for Project Look Sharp’s “Media Constructions of Presidential Campaigns” curriculum updated – just in time for election season

In anticipation of the upcoming 2016 presidential election, Ithaca College’s Media Literacy Initiative “Project Look Sharp” has updated their popular high school through college curriculum to include media resources comparing past presidential campaigns with the current election.

Sox Sperry describes the new materials via an article published in “Social Education,” the National Council for the Social Studies journal, “Social Education and is entitled “(Not so) Unprecedented: Media analysis of the 2016 Presidential Race and Its Historical Precedents.””. The article outlines newly created resources, and how teachers can find and use them in the classroom, as well as the original curriculum materials – which have been downloaded by thousands of educators.

The article poses the question: “How can we bring these issues into the classroom in a way that engages students, and that teaches core content and develops the skills needed to strengthen critical thinking?” To answer this question, Sperry’s article includes resources such as historic and contemporary media documents for student analysis, media literacy questions, contrasting images and sample conversations between teachers and students to help guide the conversations.

“Helping students to develop media literacy skills––the abilities to access, analyze, evaluate and produce media messages––is one way to support habits of inquiry consistent with social studies learning,” wrote Sperry, “This article highlights the analysis of media messages from past elections and compares them with current media messages, as a way to invite students to reflect on key questions related to media literate citizenship.

The original lessons, “Media Constructions of Presidential Campaigns” by Chris Sperry and Sox Sperry, contain over 200 curriculum activities that use media messages from electoral campaigns beginning in 1800 and continuing to present day to help students critically analyze presidential campaigns.

Documents, curriculum materials and lesson plans within “Media Constructions of Presidential Campaigns” along with the 2016 update are available free of charge at

For more information, email or call 607-274-3471.


Project Look Sharp is Ithaca College’s Media Literacy Initiative. Project Look Sharp supports the integration of critical thinking through media literacy in school curriculum and teaching. They do this through developing and providing lesson plans, media materials, training, and support for educators at all education levels. The purpose of media literacy education is to help individuals of all ages develop the habits of inquiry and skills of expression they need to be critical thinkers, effective communicators, and active citizens in today’s world.


From day one, Ithaca College prepares students for personal and professional success through hands-on experience with internships, research and study abroad. Its integrative curriculum builds bridges across disciplines and uniquely blends liberal arts and professional study. Located in New York’s Finger Lakes region, the College is home to 6,100 undergraduate and 400 graduate students and offers over 100 degree programs in its schools of Business, Communications, Humanities and Sciences, Health Science and Human Performance, and Music.




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