What's in the News?

Age Range: 7 - 11
By: Paul Hagness

This project is good for groups from six to twenty, and it covers so many areas of the curriculum. It is a current events activity.

I used a local newspaper, formed anywhere from seven to as many as fifteen questions from each paper, and did this for four or five papers during the course of the week. Then, usually on Friday, I brought all the papers to class, split up the students up into groups, no bigger than four to a group, depending on your class size.

Each student received a set of the questions from all the papers. Each group received one of the newspapers. The group would split the paper into sections, and as a group, hunt down the answers. Each group was working together and would all receive the same grade. Only one set of questions and answers would be handed in from each group. I gave each group 15 minutes with each paper and then we would rotate the papers until each group had a chance to look for answers in each paper. This depends on how many papers you want to use and how much time you are alotted. I used anywhere from 3-5 papers.

Also, as a little incentive, I gave a group a bonus point if they could find all the correct answers to their paper in 10 minutes or less. Also, at the 10 minute mark, I gave the students the sections numbers of the paper, i.e. "A", "B", etc. to help them find answers they were stuggling to find. The sections only, however, not page numbers, that would make it too easy.

I used this every Friday for about 15 years and every kid that I ever taught told me that was the best part about being in my class. If you work on your questions every day, instead of doing them all on say a Thursday night, it really doesn't take much of your time.

Remember to put the answers and the sections and page numbers where you found them on a separate sheet of paper for yourself when it comes to correcting, etc.

Kids love this, and it is a wonderful current events activity.


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