Political Cartoons - Lesson Lesson Plan

Level: Grades 10 - 12

Author: This unit was created by Todd Solar as part of a Media Education course taught by John Pungente at the Faculty of Education, University of Manitoba, 1992.


In this lesson, students decode and explain the relevance of editorial cartoons. The class begins with a teacher-led deconstruction of a political cartoon, after which students decode editorial cartoons that they have selected. Suggested activities include having students create their own cartoons; a comparison of how editorial cartoons from different countries address the same issue; a current events timeline composed of editorial cartoons collected throughout the school year; and a visit to a cartoonist’s studio.

Materials Collect political cartoons from newspapers. The larger your collection, the easier it will be to carry out the unit.


To enable students to;

  • decode political cartoons and explain their relevance
  • discuss similarities and differences between various cartoons, grouped thematically or chronologically.
  • create their own political cartoons
  • describe the process of designing a political cartoon

This lesson and all associated documents (handouts, overheads, backgrounders) are available in an easy-print, pdf kit version.

Lesson Kit