Mr. Wetherhold, media teacher at Salisbury High School, and the new media program are recent recipients of a competitive grant from the PA organization, Drug Free Pennsylvania. Salisbury is excited for the opportunity for our students to participate in this media literacy program! Drug Free Pennsylvania recently released the press release below, sharing more about this exciting opportunity. Congratulations to Mr. Wetherhold for a successful grant application and involving Salisbury High School in this important educational opportunity.
Harrisburg, PA (March 5, 2012) – Drug Free Pennsylvania, the Commonwealth’s statewide non-profit organization dedicated to reducing substance abuse in schools, homes and businesses announced today the winners of the the first annual Media Literacy High School grant program.
The Media Literacy High School program provides funding, technical assistance and collaboration opportunities for high schools to implement a student-centered, peer-to-peer media literacy initiative focused on examining and understanding the impact of media messages on drug and alcohol use among teenagers. High schools from across Pennsylvania competed for three slots in the inaugural program. The selection committee chose the following schools for particpiation in the 2012 Media Literacy High School program:
Salisbury High School
Salisbury High School serves approximately 500 students and is part of the Salisbury Township School District located in the Allentown area of the Lehigh Valley. The school offers an intimate setting in which students can often experience small classes and work on unique projects. These include the student media lab and broadcasting center which is used to produce daily and weekly programming and to explore the psychology and social impact of media through programs such as full-year elective courses in media messages, media management and media studies.
Souderton Area High School
Souderton Area High School serves more than 2,000 students in a rural and suburban community north of Philadelphia in Montgomery and Bucks counties. Media development and engagement has been a critical part of the high school program of studies for many years, and video production electives are some of the most popular courses offered at SAHS, culminating in an annual school film festival. The high school also allows students to explore current issues and career interests through an innovative 5th Block that provides dedicated schedule time each week.
Tacony Academy Charter School
Located in the Rhawnhurst neighborhood of northeast Philadelphia, Tacony Academy Charter School was established in 2009 as a city-wide charter school and currently serves 738 students from across the City of Phildelphia. Cornerstones of the school’s educational program include a commitment to STEM-based (Science, Technology, Engineering & Mathematics) college preparatory learning and development of leadership skills. The school teaches a comprehensive elective course for students in media literacy and integrates media issues into academic, intellectual and research-based learning opportunities.
These three schools will implement a student media literacy high school initiative during spring 2012 and participate in online and peer-to-peer education and dialogue, guided by principles and ‘best practices’ established by the work of Renee Hobbs, PhD, founder of the Media Education Lab, and Brian Primack, M.D. of the University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine.
The Media Literacy High School program continues and expands upon the accomplishments of Drug Free Pennsylvania’s successful “The Media Straight Up!” program for middle schools and the highly recognized Media Literacy PSA Contest program, sponsored annually by Drug Free Pennsylvania in partnership with the Pennsylvania National Guard’s Counterdrug Joint Task Force.
Funding for the Media Literacy High School program was made possible by the suppport of the Pennsylvania Department of Health.
For more information, go to www.medialiteracypa.org/highschool
Mr. Kelly Wetherhold, Communications teacher at Salisbury High School, provides students with many opportunities to learn about various types of media and the messages they convey. Here are some examples:
Mr. Wetherhold’s students explored how the media creates advertising messages, including target audience. The students created media messages using the theory they learned about advertising and analyzing target audience. The product was then showcased during the Falcon Period on Impact, the high school TV show. To create the product, students used story boarding techniques as well as software such as Keynote, Garageband, iMovie, screen captures and screen recordings.
To explore the idea of the use of communication in today’s society, one student chose to explore how communication is used to tell if someone is telling the truth or lying. The student produced “How to Spot a Liar” to express how humans disclose information. The student used iMovie with an emphasis on beat markers to create the project. This project was also showcased during Falcon Period on Impact.
Students were challenged with the phrase “If ______ was never invented how would the world be different than it is today?” – a counterfactual project. For one project a student chose the printing press. Using iPhoto she produced a story to predict what would happen if the printing press was never invented.