I have chosen to discuss with my class, the media’s idea of masculinity and femininity, as well as ideal body image for both men and women.  In today’s society students are being bombarded with the images and ideas of magazines, commercials, TV shows and movies, and are missing the opportunity to create their own opinions about these issues.

Tabloid magazines are constantly criticizing the way celebrities dress and the way their bodies look.   If a woman is to skinny, she is anorexic.  If a woman is to fat, she is letting herself go.  If a woman is the right size, well, in the world of Hollywood there is no right size.  The same goes for men, unless they are supposed to look a specific way for a role, their size is critiqued as well.

The way that these celebrities dress themselves is also widely criticized.   They might not be wearing the right dress, shoe, hat, blazer, etc.  The way they express themselves through their clothing might not be feminine or masculine enough.  A man might wear a shirt that is considered “gay” and therefore he is labeled as a homosexual.  As youth read these magazines they absorb these ideals and notions.  The notions that they need to dress a specific way and look a certain way to adequately demonstrate their respective masculinity and femininity.   Youth are also forced to look at the perfect celebrities as being the norm, on which they should base their image.  Therefore if it is impossible for a young woman or man to succeed in such an area, they are seen as outside of the norm.

Over the 10 days of the unit plan the students would be introduced to the similar messages from various magazines, TV shows, movies as well as commercials.   My goal is that by creating this lesson plan, it would allow my students to be more critical and self aware of what the media is telling them.  I want to give them the tools to examine what the various media outlets are saying about men and women, and draw their own conclusions.   By the end of this unit my students should be able to read and a magazine, watch TV and movies as well as see commercials without being completely influenced by the messages they are sending.  They will have examined how they themselves portray their masculinity and femininity, and I hope, are comfortable with what they discover.

The breakdown of the unit will be as follows:

Lesson 1: Introduction
Lesson 2: Magazines
Lesson 3: Commercial & Ads
Lesson 4: TV Shows
Lesson 5: TV Shows
Lesson 6: Movies
Lesson 7: Movies
Lesson 8: Introduction of final assignment (begin working on project)
Lesson 9: Presentation of Assignments
Lesson 10: Continuing the presentation of assignments & final discussion


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