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Base Protocol for Framing PSA Storyboard Activity Description This activity provides a framework for students to create

storyboards for Public Service Announcements (PSAs) around a topic of study in science class. In doing so, students decide how they will frame their PSA in order to communicate most effectively with their home communities. This activity will take one to two class periods. Aims The intent of this activity is to allow students to consider how to think about and talk about science in a variety of contexts, especially within their home communities. This activity also provides students with a structured way of expressing to the teacher how science relates to their home communities and what is important to them in science. Materials 1. One Framing Science Sheet for each student 2. Several copies of the Storyboard Sheet for each group of 2-3 students 3. One Framing PSA Sheet for each student 4. Computer and projector 5. Access to demonstration videos (online or video files) Procedure 1. Tell your students that they will be creating a storyboard for a public service announcement (PSA) based on one of the topics covered in class. If necessary, describe what a PSA is (an example can be found at 2. Let them know that the overall question to keep in mind is, How does science fit in to what my communities expect of me? Lead a class-wide discussion on the question. 3. Tell students that their audience for their PSA is the people in their community. Ask the students to brainstorm some ideas of how the people in their community may best relate to science content. Write these ideas on the board. 4. Hand out the Framing Science Sheet and explain the concept of framing by reading the introduction on the sheet. Have students read through the frames and ask for questions. 5. As a class, ask students to categorize the ideas they came up with into the frames on the Framing Science Sheet. Ideas may fall into more than one frame.

6. Let your students know that they will be creating a storyboard for their PSA. Show the storyboarding video ( to illustrate what a storyboard is and how to create one. If time allows, show the Don Quixote example ( 7. Divide the class into groups of three to four students. Help the student groups pick topics or provide topic options from which they can choose. 8. Allow students to develop their storyboard. They may use as many Storyboard Sheets as they wish, but they should keep in mind that their PSA should be about 30-60 seconds long if they actually produced the video. Also check in to make sure they are including frames and the reasoning behind why they have chosen their frames. 9. Ask students to complete the Framing PSA Reflection Sheet. 10. Bring the class back together as a whole. Ask each group to briefly share their storyboard and the frames that they used and why. 11. Ask students if there was anything new or surprising that they learned by thinking about science in a different way. 12. Ask students if they could see themselves using these frames or other frames when talking about science with their friends, families, or community members. Write new frames on the board. 13. Ask students how they would respond to the overarching question, How does science fit in to what my communities expect of me? based on their experience creating the PSA storyboards. Ask students if there are any outstanding comments or questions.

Framing Science Sheet When people talk about science in the media, they often frame their discussion. Framing means that they talk about it in a certain way to get a point across, besides just the information. Two researchers, Matthew Nisbet and Dietram Scheufele, have come up with the frames most often used to talk about science. They are listed in the table below.
Photo Credit: Day to Night Framed by Schtumple,

Frame Social Progress Economic Development/ Competitiveness Morality/Ethics

Improving quality of life, or solution to problems, or harmony with nature instead of mastery, sustainability. Economic investment, benefits or risks; local, national, or global competitiveness. In terms of right or wrong.

Use solar or wind energy to reduce the amount of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere. Finding ways to use solar or wind energy efficiently will allow us to sell the technology and stay ahead of other countries. We have a responsibility to our children and our planet to do what is necessary to reduce the amount of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere. A majority of scientists agree that what we do has an impact on the amount of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere and on the health of our planet. Using electricity generated by nuclear power plants may reduce the carbon dioxide in the atmosphere, but there are many other dangers associated with nuclear power, such as radiation leaks and radioactive waste. The government should support alternative energy research so that the research is not held up by oil companies.

Scientific/Technical Uncertainty

A matter of expert understanding; what is known vs. unknown; either brings up or undermines experts and authority. Call for precaution in the face of possible impacts or catastrophe.

Pandoras Box/ Frankensteins Monster/ Runaway Science

Public Accountability/ Governance

Research in the public good or serving private interests.

Your job is to create a 30-60 second Public Service Announcement (PSA) based on a particular scientific topic. The PSA should be targeted at a particular audience, the people who live in your community. You will be creating the storyboard for your PSA. You need to decide which frames you will be using, and how you will be using them.


Importance for the community:

Main ideas to communicate:

Important frames to use (and why):

Storyboard Sheet Scene Description Framing and Explanation


Framing PSA Reflection Sheet What are the frames that you used in your PSA? Why are they important for talking about science with people in your community?

Could you see yourself using these frames when talking about science with people in your community? Why or why not?

What are other frames, or ways of talking, that might be useful in talking about science with people in your community? Why are they useful?

Based on creating the storyboard, is doing science different than you thought? Why or why not?