Quebec Competencies Chart - Put Your Best Face Forward

Author: Matthew Johnson, Director of Education, MediaSmarts and Stacey Dinya
Level: Grades 7 to 9
Lesson Length: 1½-2 hours
Lesson Link:

Description: In this lesson, students start by discussing the phenomenon of “selfies” and serve as experts in advising the teacher on the standards by which the “best” selfies are judged. They then discuss a number of statements taken from interviews with youth that highlight issues of self-representation, body image and gender standards, and learn about “photoshopping” images. Finally, students apply what they have learned by modifying an image that is at least 50 years old to meet “selfie” standards.

Cross-curricular Competencies

Broad Areas of Learning

  • To use information
  • To exercise critical judgement
  • To use creativity
  • To use information and communication technologies (ICT)
  • To construct his/her identity
  • To communicate appropriately
  • Media Literacy 

This lesson satisfies the following Competencies from the Quebec Education Program:

English Language Arts

To Read and Listen to Literary, Popular and Information-Based Texts

  • To use a response process when reading and listening to literary, popular, and information-based texts
  • To construct her/his own view of the world through reading and listening to literary, popular and information-based texts
  • To construct a profile of self as reader
  • To self-evaluate her/his reading development
  • To construct meaning by applying appropriate reading strategies

To Represent Her/His Literacy in Different Media

  • To apply appropriate strategies for constructing meaning
  • To self-evaluate her/his development as a viewer and producer of media texts
  • To follow a process to respond to media texts
  • To construct her/his own view of the world through the media
  • To follow a production process in order to communicate for specific purposes to a specified audience

To Use Language to Communicate and Learn

  • To use language (talk) to communicate information, experiences and point of view
  • To self-evaluate her/his language development
  • To use language (talk) for learning and thinking
  • To apply her/his knowledge of linguistic structures and features
  • To interact in collaborative group activities in a variety of roles

Visual Arts

To produce media works in the visual arts

  • To use creative ideas inspired by a stimulus for creation of media works
  • To share his/her experience of media creation
  • To use transforming gestures and elements of visual arts language according to the message and the intended viewer
  • To organize the elements that he/she has chosen, depending on the message and the intended viewer
  • To finalize his/her media creation