In the interest of fostering familiarity with a number of media outlets, additional lessons would focus on music, film & television.

Introduction to Lesson 2: Film & Television

Begin with clips from two movies that illustrate product placement. Ideally, one clip would feature obvious marketing (name dropping, long shots of product logos, actor interaction with the product) like this clip from “You’ve Got Mail” (*, while the second clip would demonstrate a more subtle approach (unused products in the background, attempts to disguise logos).

  • What just happened in this scene?
  • Did you recognize any brands or products that you use in your daily life?
  • Why do you think the characters mentioned/interacted with these products?

*Note: Youtube should not be used to view copyrighted material. This can prove to be a bit of legal/moral sticky ground in the classroom and would be a wasted opportunity for introducing the students to the library’s holdings. Borrow/request DVD’s when possible and be sure to mention the library’s alternative media.

New Skill

Like the lesson on print media, students should discuss how movie and TV show demographics relate to the products you see in each. Talk about what commercials ran during their favorite TV show / before the last movie they saw. Consider the homepage for X-Men Origins: Wolverine ( which tells us about the latest Papa John’s pizza deal, or the Dove campaign tie in with the CW network’s show Gossip Girl (

Questions, like “Based on these targeted ads, what do marketers believe about the audiences of these shows?” and “Does advertising change the content of the show?”, should develop critical thinking skills and encourage awareness of one’s environment.

Explore/Experiment (all activities for future lessons below)

Lesson 2: Official movie and network websites should provide sufficient amounts of information about marketers for students looking in the fine print. Students would repeat the above exercise with a partner, looking for the sponsorship behind their favorite movie or TV show.

Lesson 3: After establishing the corporate sponsors behind their favorite shows, students might also be asked to find connections between production studios/television networks. I.E. Viacom owns MTV and BET ( Is programming similar/different? Why or why not? Altria owns both Kraft & Phillip Morris. Are there similarities in the ways these companies advertise their products? What does this say about the intentions of the parent company?

Lesson 4: A similar look at food advertisements and corporate ownership. (The Corn Refiner's Association tries to put a new spin on corn syrup Has advertising ever made you want to
buy/try anything you normally wouldn't have wanted? How do you think advertising effects our eating habits?


As this lesson has a greater focus on non-print media and technology, students might also be asked to report their findings on a (class) blog, or make a webpage "poster" (see Project Poster below), or in a video posted online (see Kids' Vid and SchoolTube below).

Student's work should be evaluated by state education standards as well as the Association for College and Research Libraries
Standards on Information Literacy. All standards applicable to these lessons may be found here .

Additional Resources
Kids' Vid:
Project Poster:
PBSKids Go! Don't Buy It!: