Thursday, October 29, 2009

Swine Flu Vaccine Propaganda In NY Times’ Lessons For 6th Graders:

Nine “myths” about H1N1 vaccine are not myths at all
Steve Watson:
Friday, Oct 16, 2009

The New York Times has produced a detailed lesson plan for students in grades 6-12 that pushes the H1N1 flu vaccine and sets about debunking what the editors describe as “myths” surrounding the swine flu shot.

The material originates from the Times’ Learning Network feature, an educational resource for teachers and parents that works the Times’ coverage of current events into daily lesson plans for young students.

The writers of the material are New York Times employees that have backgrounds in education. The material itself is recommended for use in schools and is required to meet with McREL standards.

As an introduction to the piece, a video presents a Times reporter walking the streets of new york in a full bio suit, gloves, goggles and mask asking people their opinions on swine flu. The video seems mostly pointless other than to make the reporter’s activity seem like a complete overreaction. It briefly introduces the vaccine in a positive light, and later on in the lesson plan, teachers are asked to remind students of this.

The lesson plan then states:

Have students return to their journals to add their thoughts on her final words. Invite students to share their journal writings, and then move the discussion to the vaccine. Ask: Do you plan to get the newly released H1N1 vaccine? Why or why not? What have you heard about it? Are you confused about it at all? What fears and questions, if any, do you have about the vaccine?

The plan then introduces a handout entitled H1N1 Vaccine: Facts or Myths? (PDF Link) and instructs the teacher or parent to conceal from the students the fact that all nine points on the list are “myths”.

As we will discover, none of the points are “myths” at all, and the New York Times is engaging in debunking entirely legitimate information.


No comments:

Post a Comment