A text alternative is available at http://www.nichd.nih.gov/news/resources/links/Pages/transcript_050713-MSY-spotlight-BPM.aspx.
"The kids love Media-Smart Youth."
Media-Smart Youth Facilitator, YMCA of Coastal Georgia
Watch as Media-Smart Youth program facilitators share their experiences using the curriculum, offer suggestions on how to teach the program in different settings, and undertake the program's concluding media project—the Big Production—including ideas for finding a media partner to help participants with their project.
A text alternative is available at http://www.nichd.nih.gov/news/resources/links/Pages/transcript_050713-MSY-spotlight-VOE.aspx
How Was Media-Smart Youth Developed?
Media-Smart Youth underwent a thoughtful and deliberate development process, with extensive review and testing. The initial draft was pilot-tested, extensively revised, pilot-tested again, and further refined. This development process resulted in the first release of the curriculum in October 2005. Subsequent feedback led to development of the Media-Smart Youth Guide for Training Program Facilitators.
Media-Smart Youth was selected as one of four youth curricula included in We Can! (Ways to Enhance Children’s Activity & Nutrition). We Can! is a nationwide education program that aims to help youth stay at a healthy weight by encouraging improved food choices, increased physical activity, and reduced screen time (time spent sitting in front of a TV or computer).
The Eunice Kennedy Shriver National Institute of Child Health and Human Development (NICHD) conducted a 10-site pilot test with more than 275 youth. This pilot phase was very valuable in developing and refining the Media-Smart Youth curriculum. The youth-serving organizations that participated in the pilot phase are listed below. (Note: Some organizations had more than one pilot site):
- Girl Scout Council of Greater Minneapolis, Minneapolis, Minnesota
- Girl Scouts of Rolling Hills Council, North Branch, Rolling Hills, New Jersey
- Latin American Youth Center, Washington, D.C.
- Logan Square Neighborhood Association, Chicago, Illinois
- Spartanburg Terrace Tenants Association/Save the Children, Spartanburg, South Carolina
- Sports and Arts in Schools Foundation, Long Island City, New York
- YMCA of Westfield, Westfield, New Jersey
The youth and the adult facilitators and program directors for these sites provided weekly feedback as they used the Media-Smart Youth curriculum. Their input and advice helped to shape the curriculum during every phase of development.
Expert Discussion Panel
NICHD sponsored the Youth and Media Expert Discussion in June 2009 to bring together researchers and experts to discuss the role of the media in young people’s lives, particularly new media, such as social networking sites, blogs, and text messages. The meeting’s goals were to:
- Find out what types of media young people are using and how they’re using them.
- Learn what kinds of advertising are most prevalent in these types of media.
- Find out how the ability to generate content in new media might influence the way we teach media literacy in the Media-Smart Youth program.
The presentations and discussions helped inform later revisions to the program.
Media-Smart Youth Program Evaluation
In January 2009, the NICHD completed an in-depth evaluation of Media-Smart Youth to assess how the curriculum can be implemented in an after-school program environment and to measure the program outcomes among the youth who participated.
The NICHD conducted the evaluation of Media-Smart Youth using a randomized group experimental design. Pairs of schools with after-school programs were matched according to socioeconomic status of the schools’ communities and were randomly assigned to either the experimental or the control group.
Program Evaluation Results
"The change in the kids after they go through this program is incredible."
Media-Smart Youth Facilitator, Girl Scout Council of Greater Minneapolis
Results indicated that, compared to youth who did not participate in the program, youth who participated in Media-Smart Youth showed:
- A statistically significant increase in knowledge and skills in nutrition, physical activity, media awareness, and media analysis
- A trend toward positive intention to change behavior in the next month by making more healthy choices, such as doing more weight-bearing activities, eating fewer high-fat snacks, and eating or drinking more foods with calcium
Learn More About the Evaluation
The Media-Smart Youth Program Evaluation Fact Sheet provides a concise description of the evaluation design, the findings, and comments from Media-Smart Youth facilitators around the country about the program’s impact.
Read the Media-Smart Youth Program Evaluation Report (PDF - 1.5 MB) to get an in-depth look at the evaluation methods, data analysis, and results.
Media-Smart Youth Updated: What’s New
The updated second edition of Media-Smart Youth, released in 2013, retains all the elements that made the first edition successful and includes a few new features, such as:
- Digital media information in the discussions and activities
- All the latest federal nutrition and physical activity guidelines
- Tips for Media-Smart Parents (PDF - 318 KB) handouts for each lesson, which complement the take-home sheets for youth and offer parents and guardians an opportunity to learn alongside their children
- New resources and tips in the appendices