Grade 11

Can Media Be Addictive?

Are we addicted to our devices, and, if so, are companies to blame?

The word "addiction" packs a heavy punch, and the research is inconclusive on whether it's truly accurate when it comes to digital device use. What's certain, however, is that as people use devices and apps more, profits increase for the companies who make them. Help your students recognize how most of the technology they use is designed to keep them hooked, and help them use this as an opportunity to find more balance in their digital lives.

See the U.K. version of this lesson plan

Learning Objectives:
  • Analyze and draw conclusions about a series of photos depicting device use.
  • Use online resources to track arguments for and against whether we are addicted to our devices.
  • Complete a short writing assignment analyzing one or more aspects related to the device addiction debate.
Key Vocabulary: addicted  ·  addictive design  ·  humane design  ·  media balance
being physically or mentally dependent on a thing or activity, and continuing to do it despite negative consequences
addictive design:
features or aspects of a device or app that are intended to hook the user into frequent use
humane design:
features or aspects of a device or app that prioritizes what’s good for people’s lives
media balance:
using media in a way that feels healthy and in balance with other life activities (family, friends, school, hobbies, etc.)
Media Balance & Well-Being
This lesson meets standards for Common Core ELACASELAASLand ISTESee standards

Lesson Plan

60 mins.

What You'll Need

Select resources below, then open in English or Spanish. Unlock free resources

Classroom resources

  • Lesson Slides
  • Are We Hooked? Handout Teacher Version
  • Lesson Quiz

Take-home resources