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Creating, publishing Storify news
about native ads, sponsored content


by John Bowen


Activity: Creating and publishing a Storify on news about native ads and sponsored content

This lesson should follow other lessons on sponsored content. To help maintain student awareness of native ads and sponsored content, students will create Storify news stories and publish them to keep themselves and their communities aware of each.


  • Students will become better able to identify the ethical controversy of sponsored content and native ads
  • Students will be able to compare and contrast sponsored content with native advertising
  • Students will be able to recognize credible sources and verify their information.

Common Core State Standards

CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.SL.11-12.2 Integrate multiple sources of information presented in diverse formats and media (e.g., visually, quantitatively, orally) in order to make informed decisions and solve problems, evaluating the credibility and accuracy of each source and noting any discrepancies among the data.
CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.SL.11-12.5 Make strategic use of digital media (e.g., textual, graphical, audio, visual, and interactive elements) in presentations to enhance understanding of findings, reasoning, and evidence and to add interest.
CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.SL.11-12.4 Present information, findings, and supporting evidence, conveying a clear and distinct perspective, such that listeners can follow the line of reasoning, alternative or opposing perspectives are addressed, and the organization, development, substance, and style are appropriate to purpose, audience, and a range of formal and informal tasks
CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.SL.11-12.1.D Respond thoughtfully to diverse perspectives; synthesize comments, claims, and evidence made on all sides of an issue; resolve contradictions when possible; and determine what additional information or research is required to deepen the investigation or complete the task.


50 minutes

Materials / resources

Blackboard or whiteboard

Teacher laptop and digital projector

Internet access

Student computers if available

Lesson step-by-step

Step 1 — Warm-up (5 minutes)

The teacher will ask students if they have seen news about native advertising or sponsored content. Using Storify, they can explore its value and credibility.

(The teacher should do the Pinterest/Padlet lesson first for information about native ads and sponsored content.)

Step 2 — Large-group work (35 minutes)

The teacher will then show students how to use Storify to search for news and sources from social and digital media. Students will need to create a free Storify account.

Then the teacher will review with students how to create Storify links that show the latest news or issues about sponsored content and native ads.

The teacher will also remind students of how to check source credibility.

Students will create individual Storify documents that put the news or issue into a social and digital media context. Along with the links and images, students would prepare their own headline, leads and transition content for each Storify they post. They will also be responsible for verification and credibility of sources used in their story.

The teacher will make an ongoing, extra credit assignment for students as they find and post examples.

Step 3 — Assessment (10 minutes)

The teacher will evaluate the students’ posts and summaries and comments and grant an appropriate amount of extra credit for that school’s program.


The teacher could vary the assignment by making it a regularly graded assignment, possibly once a week. The teacher could also vary the topic. For example, the teacher instead of native ads or sponsored content could have students seek examples of solutions journalism, journalistic leadership, fake news and more

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