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The Media Smart Body Image lesson was launched in September 2011 and was developed to align with the Government's Body Confidence campaign. The aim of the one hour lesson is to provide an introduction to the role of the media and advertising in influencing young people's perceptions of body image.

Developed for 10-11 year olds, the Media Smart Body Image lesson highlights techniques used in post-production and examples of positive body image campaigns to help children think critically about the images they are seeing.

Notes and Lesson Plan

The Body Image lesson is a one hour lesson that includes teaching materials and 2 worksheets.

Powerpoint Lessons

The Teaching Materials are accompanied by a Body Image Lesson Powerpoint and extra materials.

Body Image Parent Pack

The Media Smart Body Image parent pack was launched in June 2012 following the success of our Body Image Lesson. It represents out first resource for parents and aims to help extend children's body image education into the home.

Again developed in conjunction with the Governments campaign on Body Confidence, it looks at the portrayal of people in the media – including the preference for the use of certain body types and its impact on young girls and boys.

Aimed at 6-11 year olds the Body Image Parent Pack aims to help promote positive self-esteem among children, by encouraging parents and children to think critically about the images they see in the media and understand that they are aspirational and not necessarily achievable. This guide continues on the theme of the lesson which studied the portrayal of people in advertising and media and the different techniques used for digital enhancement/manipulation.

"My own research has shown that 92% of girls worldwide want to change at least one aspect of their physical appearance, with 12% resorting to extreme measures to lose weight. Highlighting the inconsistencies between what is real and what has been altered can be a valuable tool in helping children towards self acceptance as they realise that the celebrities and models they are invited to admire don’t quite look as they are portrayed."

Susie Orbach (author, psychoanalyst and mother)

"Young people are being set an impossible standard by images in media and advertising which can impact on their self esteem."

Lynne Featherstone (Former Equalities Minister)

"We must provide families and children with the skills and resilience to manage commercial influences and show children that beauty comes in all colours, shapes and sizes."

Dr Katherine Rake, Chief Executive, Family and Parenting Institute

More about the


Body image has risen up the agenda as an important issue because technology and social trends have increased young people's access to media and advertising, and consequently their exposure to images of a certain body type.

This lesson was developed to help teachers with an issue that they are already fully aware of and want to address, however there is very little guidance as to how to do this from a media and advertising perspective specifically.

The Media Smart Body Image lesson provides a dedicated lesson plan and resources that teachers can use to address these issues more effectively.

body image video

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