Incorporate Ecomedia Literacy into Your Classroom with These 30-minute Activities

These 1/2 hour ecomedia literacy activities offer a diverse range of exercises that encourage students to critically engage with environmental media messages, fostering interdisciplinary connections with liberal arts and sciences disciplines. From analyzing environmental claims and ethical dilemmas to delving into the impact of visual rhetoric, these activities empower students to navigate the complex landscape of ecomedia, enhancing their media literacy, environmental awareness, and ethical reasoning skills.

Ecomedia Literacy: Principles and Practices

This short article offers practical insights and strategies for incorporating ecomedia literacy into media education, addressing the urgent need to foster environmental consciousness and media engagement in today’s interconnected world. By presenting a diverse array of educational activities and methods, it equips educators and learners with tools to navigate and critically evaluate the complex relationships between media, ecology, and society.

Bringing Ecomedia Literacy into the Classroom

This article underscores the vital need to integrate ecomedia literacy into media education, addressing the interconnected challenges posed by media and technology on society and the planet. It provides a wealth of practical strategies and examples for educators, offering an invaluable resource to build awareness and empower students to critically engage with ecomedia, environmental issues, and ethical considerations across various media platforms and genres.

Corporate Greenwashing? Exxon and Greenpeace

This is a media literacy and critical thinking activity in which students decode an ExxonMobil commercial and an environmental advocacy video for conflicting messages about corporate advertising credibility and about human impact on the environment.

Audi ad: Norway says no way to Will Ferrell

Audi responds to the GM Super Bowl ad with it’s own version of an electric vehicle (EV) ad. It can be used to explore humor and corporate framing of environmental issues. It is suggested to be watched with the GM Will Ferrell ad and Norway’s response.

Will Ferrell’s Super Bowl GM EV Ad

General Motors and Will Ferrell make fun of Norway in this 2021 Super Bowl ad. It can be used to discuss the idea of green nationalism and conservatism. It should be viewed along with Audi and Norway’s response.

Chipotle Ad: Back to the Start

Willie Nelson, Coldplay, Chipotle and director Johnny Kelly collaborated with the Chipotle Cultivate Foundation to create this short animated film highlighting the issue of sustainable farming. This video is good for generating a discussion about different food systems–sustainable and industrial–and how these systems are represented. This is also excellent for exploring the spectrum of environmental ideologies (anthropocentric versus ecocentric). Given that this is produced by a fast food chain, could this be considered an example of greenwashing?

Ford’s EV Ad: Organic Compost

Pashon Murray, founder of Detroit Dirt (, parodies the Cadillac ELR Coupe Super Bowl ad. It shows a version of the American Dream in which an entrepreneurial Black women succeeds by creating a business of organic compost. This video should be juxtaposed with the Cadillac Super Bowl ad and can be used as the basis of a discussion about competing visions of the American Dream (who it includes or excludes and its impact on the environment). This ad can be used to explore ecological values. It can also be used in any discussion about the range of environmental politics portrayed in advertising.

Cadillac EV Super Bowl Ad: The American Dream?

This Cadillac 2014 Commercial is for their electric vehicle (EV) ELR Coupe. Explore with students how it represents the American Dream and its connection with class status, race, and gender. The ad is promoting an EV, but are the beliefs and values depicted beneficial or damaging to the environment? Compare this ad with Ford’s Upside: Anything is Possible ad.