Lesson Plan

Where's That Photo From? Identify the Source


Each year, unsuspecting victims lose millions of dollars to online fraud. One scam involves using a stolen profile photo of a military veteran and soliciting cash and gifts from sympathetic victims. This skills-based video and accompanying lesson will help you determine whether photos posted online are authentic with a technique called reverse image search. Learn how to use the Reverse Image Search technique as a starting point to evaluate online images. What skills, beyond the image search, are necessary to be able to determine the validity of online information?


Students will:

  • Explain how photos are used to propagate misleading information.
  • Practice the skill of reverse image search and describe the process as applied to the provided examples.
  • Evaluate sources of digital information and provide a rationale for whether the information is misleading or not.
  • Media/News Literacy
  • Social Studies
    For Teachers

    Essential Questions

    • What is a reverse image search and how can it be used to verify online information?
      • How do you conduct a reverse image search?
      • What complementary skills are necessary for verifying information?

    Additional Resources

    Transcript for "Where's That Photo From? Identify the Source"Retro Report 
    Google ImagesGoogle 
    Example Image: Fukushima DaisiesTwitter 
    Example Image: Anti-cheating HatsFacebook 
    Example Image: 3D Model of AdamTwitter 
    COR for the History ClassroomCivics Online Reasoning 
    Intro to What's the Evidence?Civic Online Reasoning 
    Evaluating PhotosCivic Online Reasoning 
    Evaluating VideosCivic Online Reasoning 

    Cite specific textual evidence to support analysis of primary and secondary sources, attending to such features as the date and origin of the information.

    Determine the central ideas or information of a primary or secondary source; provide an accurate summary of how key events or ideas develop over the course of the text.

    Determine the meaning of words and phrases as they are used in a text, including vocabulary describing political, social, or economic aspects of history/social science.

    Analyze how a text uses structure to emphasize key points or advance an explanation or analysis.

    Assess the extent to which the reasoning and evidence in a text support the author’s claims.

    Explain how supporting questions contribute to an inquiry and how, through engaging source work, new compelling and supporting questions emerge.

    Determine the kinds of sources that will be helpful in answering compelling and supporting questions, taking into consideration multiple points of view represented in the sources, the types of sources available, and the potential uses of the sources.

    Use questions generated about multiple historical sources to pursue further inquiry and investigate additional sources.

    Gather relevant information from multiple sources representing a wide range of views while using the origin, authority, structure, context, and corroborative value of the sources to guide the selection.

    Identify evidence that draws information directly and substantively from multiple sources to detect inconsistencies in evidence in order to revise or strengthen claims.

    Critique the use of claims and evidence in arguments for credibility.

    Questions? Tips? Concerns? Reach out to our Director of Education, David Olson: dolson@retroreport.com