Lesson Plans

Lesson 1.1: What is Newsworthy?

Subjects: Journalism, Language Arts, Social Studies Estimated Time: One 45-minute class period Grade Level: Upper Elementary, Middle and High School Materials Copies of Worksheet 1.1 for every student Warm Up Activity News and Information 1. Ask students “What news stories are important in your life?” and write their answers on… Read More

Lesson 1.2: What Makes a Good Video Report?

Subjects: Journalism, Language Arts, Social Studies Estimated Time: One 45-minute class period Grade Level: Upper Elementary, Middle and High School Overview Students will learn about components that make up a good video report and how to provide feedback effectively. Materials Copies of Worksheets 1.2 A and B for every… Read More

Lesson 1.3: Journalism Ethics

Subjects: Journalism, Language Arts, Social Studies Estimated Time: One 45-minute class period Grade Level: Middle and High School Materials: Worksheet 1.3 Overview Students will explore, engage and develop a thorough understanding of the theories and ethics related to journalism. Warm Up Activity General Ethics Ask students “What are ethics?” “How can… Read More

Lesson 1.4: Copyright & Fair Use

Subjects: Journalism, Language Arts, Social Studies Estimated Time: One 25-minute class period Grade Level: Middle and High School Overview: In developing video packages for the PBS NewsHour Student Reporting Labs program, your students may want to incorporate copyrighted materials, including photographs, music, film or video clips. To help them decide when and how to… Read More

Lesson 1.5: Broadcast News

Subjects: Journalism, Language Arts, Social Studies Estimated Time: One 45-minute class period Grade Level: Middle and High School Overview: Students will identify structural features of broadcast news and then compare different news sources. Materials Make copies of Worksheet 1.5 for students. Warm Up Activity What is broadcast news? Ask students if… Read More

Lesson 2.1: Finding Story Ideas

Subjects: Journalism, Language Arts, Social Studies Estimated Time: One 45-minute class period Grade Level: Upper Elementary, Middle and High School Overview By generating news story ideas from their own life, students learn how news develops from people’s natural curiosity about the people, places, events and situations of daily life. Materials: Worksheet 2.1, Student Reporting… Read More

Lesson 2.2: Interviewing: The Art of Asking Questions

Developed by Renee Hobbs Subjects: Journalism, Language Arts, Social Studies Estimated Time: One 45-minute class period Grade Level: Upper Elementary, Middle and High School Overview Students practice calling a source to conduct a phone interview in a role-playing simulation activity. They learn five characteristics of good interviewing and five characteristics of being… Read More

Lesson 2.3: Facts vs. Opinions vs. Informed Opinions and their Role in Journalism

Subjects: Journalism, Language Arts, Social Studies Estimated Time: One 45 minute class period Grade Level: Upper Elementary, Middle and High School Overview: Students learn why many people like opinions more than facts and reflect on the negative and positive consequences of this tendency. Then they practice three strategies for determining the difference between the… Read More

Lesson 3.1: Production

Subjects: Journalism, Language Arts, Social Studies Estimated Time: One 45-minute class period Grade Level: Upper Elementary, Middle and High School Overview: In this unique set of video tutorials produced by Gil Garcia of Austin High School, students learn about the different roles associated with video production, how to scout a location and set up,… Read More

Lesson 3.2: Team Work and Planning

Subjects: Journalism, Language Arts, Social Studies Estimated Time: One 45-minute class period Grade Level: Upper Elementary, Middle and High School Overview Working in groups can be challenging for even the best students and so helping kids learn how to work well together can be an invaluable lesson not only in journalism but… Read More