Fact: arctic bumblebees are dwindling in population in the Alaskan wilderness, signaling a concern about the effects of climate change. This is the news story I chose to share with four people in my life.
To my 3-year-old daughter, the written word is insignificant. Instead, visual aids become key. After showing her pictures of the subject bumblebee and then referencing heat and ice melting like how it does in a hot drink, she was able to somewhat grasp the nature of the piece. Basically, I had to make the story smaller for her. It had to fit into her life, be relevant to her frame of reference.
For my 70+ dad, I simply sent an email with the link to the story. He read it at his discretion. My 66-year-old mom required a phone call, because she hasn’t quite mastered technology.
The best way to get my husband’s focused attention is to grab a moment of his time and tell him verbally about the story. I pulled up the article on my phone so that I could read a few choice quotes for him, knowing that he likes direct-from-the-source citations. We then discussed the article.
It would be difficult to find a way to mediate this story for all 4 people. Perhaps a photo layout of the story so that my daughter could understand it too? Even then, this is an example of why mediating news across different realities has so many complications.