Cartoon Analysis – Lobbying
Activity Type: Group
Objective: Students will utilize a primary source – a political cartoon – to analyze and to categorize political messages and meanings.
- Break students into groups or pairs.
- Provide each group/pair with a copy of the political cartoon on lobbying found in Chapter 4 of A People’s Guide to the Federal Budget, or project the cartoon in the front of the class.
- After reading the chapter and distributing cartoon to groups:
- Students will describe to each other what is happening in the cartoon.
- Students will list words and phrases that they do not understand and, using dictionaries or computers, look up words.
- Students will categorize the lobby statements. (Note: students should come up with their own categories through discussion within their group.)
- Groups will share their categorized statements with the class.
- Groups will answer the following questions:
Extension Activity: Upon completion of group cartoon analysis and discussion, students may individually respond to the following questions in a one-page paper:
- What is the message of this political cartoon?
- Does your group believe the author has a specific political message? If so, what is it?
- Why is lobbying an important part of democracy?
- Why could it be problematic? Students should give as many specific examples as possible.
- Why is lobbying an integral component of our democracy?
- When, or why specifically, if at all, can it be problematic?
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