Just a Joke? Printable activity sheet  Lesson Plan

Just a Joke - Thumbnail image

This printable activity sheet introduces basic media literacy skills and concepts and is suitable for use in homes, schools and libraries. It can be completed independently, but children will learn more if you discuss the activity with them. Younger children may need help reading the instructions and completing the activity. 

This activity is followed by a list of other MediaSmarts resources that can be used to extend the learning. 

Just a Joke? (ages 8-13) 

In this activity, kids learn how emojis can be used to show people how they feel when communicating online. 

Supporting resources 

Workshop: Respecting Yourself and Others 

This workshop was created to provide tweens and young teens with strategies and knowledge that will help them respect themselves, respect others and respect the space when using social media. 

Tipsheet: Building Empathy in Children and Teens 

This tipsheet explores how to foster empathy in children, teens and tweens and how to remind them to use it when they’re communicating online. 


Let’s Connect! 

Just like in real life, when we connect with online friends, it's important to show respect. Let's keep a positive attitude and not be rude! Make sure you feel safe and treat others well, and the fun will never end! 

The Emoji Dance! 

Sometimes words aren't enough to get your meaning across. That's where emojis come in. Words and emojis make a great team. Do the emoji dance with Ava and end it with a big happy face emoji! 


Behaving Ethically Online: Ethics and Empathy 

In this lesson students are introduced to the idea that “hot” emotional states such as anger or excitement can make it harder for them to control how they act.  

Behaving Ethically Online: Ethics and Values 
In this lesson students consider how we come to hold values and how they affect our behaviour, especially online. 

Calling Out versus Calling In: Helping youth respond to casual prejudice online 
This lesson introduces students to the idea of “calling in” – reaching out to someone privately with the assumption that they didn’t mean to do any harm – and explores how this idea can be applied both to casual prejudice online and when responding to stereotyping and other negative representations in media.  

Understanding Cyberbullying : Virtual vs. Physical Worlds  
In this lesson students explore the verbal and visual cues that we rely on to understand how other people are feeling. They then consider the differences between online and offline communication and discuss how these differences may make it difficult to understand the effect our words and actions have on others online. 

Just a joke? Helping youth respond to casual prejudice 
In this lesson, students analyze media representations of relational aggression, such as sarcasm and put-down humour, then consider the ways in which digital communication may make it harder to recognize irony or satire and easier to hurt someone’s feelings without knowing it.