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Infotainment: When news is only about entertainment


In this lesson on the changing role of media and the concept of infotainment, students will learn the meaning of infotainment and explore its prevalence in the news they are exposed to. Students will analyze this concept by evaluating several news sources of their choosing as well as examine scholastic journalism examples for this as well.


  • Students will analyze the role of infotainment in today’s news presence.
  • Students will analyze the role of infotainment in today’s student news presence.
  • Students will explain and defend their position on the concept of infotainment.

Common Core State Standards

CCSS.ELA-Literacy.RI.9-10.8 Delineate and evaluate the argument and specific claims in a text, assessing whether the reasoning is valid and the evidence is relevant and sufficient; identify false statements and fallacious reasoning.


50-minute class


Computers for research


Lesson step-by-step

1. Building background — 5 minutes

Ask students for the definition of infotainment. (See Terms lesson for definition if needed.)

2. Exploration — 30 minutes

Next, ask students to print out the homepage of at least three different news sources. These can be local, national, etc. Then they should begin to read the stories on the site — keeping notes on what they read and starring it if they think it fits the category of infotainment.

3. Discussion — 10 minutes

Ask students to get into groups. Then, hand out highlighters to each group. Students should highlight the articles that are more infotainment in nature. Students should figure out the percentage of stories that are infotainment.

4. Debrief — 5 minutes

Ask the students for their reaction about what they found. What sites had the most infotainment? Which had the least?

What role does ethics play in this?


If students have extra time in the lab, they may want to try the following if they can tell a story from ad: