Diversity and Media Ownership Lesson Plan

Level: Grades 9-12

Duration: 2 ½ to 4 hours

Author: Matthew Johnson, Director of Education, MediaSmarts

This lesson is part of USE, UNDERSTAND & ENGAGE: A Digital Media Literacy Framework for Canadian Schools.


In this lesson students are introduced to the media literacy key concepts that “media are created to re-present reality” and “media are influenced by commercial considerations.” They then read one of two articles – one is an overview of diverse media in Canada, the other is a more personal account of Michaëlle Jean’s experiences as an African-Canadian journalist in Quebec – and consider the importance of media ownership, the relative roles of diverse and mainstream media in reflecting and promoting Canadian multiculturalism, and changes in diverse participation and representation in Canadian media. Finally, students research and debate topics that emerge from their classroom discussions.

This lesson is part of the That's Not Me: Diversity in Media lesson series.

Learning Outcomes

Students will:

  • critically reflect on the “creation” of media texts
  • consider the “re-presentation” of people and events in media from a given point of view
  • reflect on the importance of equitable representation in media
  • consider the consequences of media representation on society
  • reflect on the role of stereotypes in media and their consequences
  • consider the importance of minority groups owning their own media outlets
  • participate in a formal debate

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

Lesson Kit