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Don’t Believe Everything You Hear or Read

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Mars Peopled by One Vast Thinking Vegetable! Salt Lake Tribune, October 13, 1912
Mars Peopled by One Vast Thinking Vegetable! Salt Lake Tribune, October 13, 1912

In the most recent “Right to the Source” column in NSTA’s magazine The Science Teacher, Michael Apfeldorf discusses reactions in the early 20th century to reports of life on Mars. He explains that as early as 1894, scientists noted that conditions on Mars would not support life, but wild theories persisted in popular media. That reminded us of the Library’s many April Fools’ Day posts featuring primary sources that should not be taken at face value.

Looking for other ways to help students analyze sources and evaluate information? Explore these resources for ideas.

Analyzing primary sources can help students become better critical thinkers who are willing to evaluate information and dig deeply to find the answers to questions.

How will you use primary sources to encourage students to look for the story behind the source?



Comments (3)

  1. Danna,
    Wonderful post that highlights the importance of critical literacy skill development.

  2. I really enjoyed reading this post, Danna. With so much information available, this has become such a critical skill for all to learn- evaluating information and digging deeper with (credible) resources to validate information. Students become “critical users of information” when learning skills to do this effectively. I believe the “Further Investigation” row in the Library of Analysis Tool is extremely helpful in getting students to consider the important questions and to seek credible sources to help them validate what they think they know. Thanks, Danna!

  3. Trust yourself always. Take time, put your skills in practice. You will never be cheated . . . . .

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