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January 2003

Don't Buy It
Media literacy site from PBS to help kids cope with advertising!
Grade Level: 3-5, 6-8

This interactive site teaches children media literacy by focusing on advertising tricks and techniques in all media.
Don't Buy It! is well designed with bright graphics and engaging activities. Front-page graphics are dynamically generated to keep it interesting for return visits. Flash Player is required.
This user-friendly site is easy to navigate. Links to the five major areas of the site are in the top navigation bar. There is also a bottom navigation menu for the other areas of the site.
Don't Buy It! provides children with numerous opportunities to learn about media literacy through participation. Such activities as designing a cereal box, becoming a detective, and creating an ad all help kids explore the tricks of the advertising trade. Children are encouraged to learn how to see through the sales pitch and become smart consumers. A look behind the scenes of music, magazines and television shows kids how products are made to look appealing. Additionally there are suggestions for getting involved to make a difference in the media and free screen savers, stickers and wallpaper to download. Even the flashing banner ads teach a lesson! The teacher section contains a series of lesson plans that help students learn to evaluate and analyze the media messages they see. A section for parents offers talking points and activity suggestions to help families "explore the effects of media in their lives, and stimulate family discussion on media".

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