Created: March 2017
Last Updated: April 2020
This learning experience is part of a playlist — two or more learning experiences focused on specific areas of the digital world. You can find this playlist, Creating the Change You Want, here. This particular learning experience is the second in a sequence of six. Learning experiences in a playlist build off of each other, but they were designed so that they can also be completed on their own!
|Group or individual activity:||Individual|
|Ages:||13-18 years old|
|Online / offline elements:||This learning experience contains an offline activity and a challenge that requires the use of a computer or mobile device.|
Main area: Civic and Political Engagement
Additional areas: Content Production, Digital (Literacy), Identity Exploration and Formation, Information Quality, Media (Literacy), Positive / Respectful Behavior
|License:||This learning experience has been created by Youth and Media and is licensed under a Creative Commons AttributionShareAlike 4.0 International license. For more information, please visit https://dcrp.berkman.harvard.edu/about|
Learn how social networks can be leveraged to promote advocacy efforts and how to develop online content to spread information about a cause of interest.
Computer or mobile device with Internet access
Website: How to Talk to a Decision Maker - by YouthInFront
Infographic: The Many Faces of Influence - by Traackr
Video: Nicholas Christakis TED Talk: The Hidden Influence of Social Networks - by TED
Video: How Do I Get Adults on My Side? - by YouthInFront
There is a famous phrase that says, “It isn’t what you know. It is who you know.” While this isn’t 100% accurate (what you know is also incredibly important!), it is a helpful reminder of the importance of networks. Whether you are looking for a job or trying to play sports at the next level, having a good network can allow you to make contacts who can help you achieve your goals. Advocacy efforts are no different. The bigger and better the network of people we know, the easier it will be to create change in our communities.
From our family members and friends to our teachers and community leaders, we already know more people than we think, especially when we include friends or friends and extend our network beyond those closest to us. There are many people we might not know yet who can help us achieve our goals. Social media and the Internet more broadly present other ways of meeting the kinds of individuals that might contribute skills or resources to our advocacy efforts.
[If you’d like, you can check out The Hidden Influence of Social Networks, which shows how people are connected through social networks and how we can benefit from these connections.]
In this learning experience, you will create a shareable online resource that describes the cause that you have identified. By sharing your advocacy efforts online, you can tell others about what you care about and potentially meet new people who may be able to assist your efforts! In the “Using Media to Drive Change” learning experience, you can learn about how you can spread these advocacy messages even further.
Create a shareable online resource (e.g., using Google Docs, a social media platform, a Wordpress blog, a website on Neocities, a slide presentation using Scratch, etc.) about an issue you care about, where you:
Write an introduction explaining the cause and why you believe it's important.
Provide links for several websites (e.g., an online article) dedicated to the issue.
Indicate three people who post / share / tweet about this area (Optional: Consider writing a tweet to / connecting with each of these individuals and telling them about your cause and what you would like to achieve).
Awesome job on completing this challenge! We just know that others are curious to see what you learned! In addition to sharing your work online, if you choose to do so, we encourage you to share your write-up with an educator, mentor, or advisor, or a family member or friend. We invite you to also share your write-up with the Youth and Media team through email (firstname.lastname@example.org). Please note the title of the learning experience in the subject line of the email.