Eye Witness Accounts of the Olympics

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SWBAT write a brief news article that uses an eye witness account from one of the original Olympic games.

Big Idea

This lesson requires students to be creative while using what they have learned about the Olympics to write a news article. They will write a brief article and draw an illustration to help us understand the excitement behind their chosen event.

The Four Olympic Games

15 minutes

To begin the lesson students need read and research the original Olympic games. The class will be given an Olympic article about the original games that explains their original purpose. While reading the article students will annotate and make notes to help them in their writing later. I quickly go back over the marks that might help us when reading this type of article and I model how I might write notes for the first paragraph of the article. I model to the class how I look for the key details and anything that might help me write in the future. 

Partner Practice

10 minutes

To practice an eye witness account, I am gong to have the students work in pairs. I place students in groups or have them work with their elbow partner. I then give them the expectations for what needs to be done during this time. 

First, each student will take on the reporter and athlete role. When you are the athlete, you will choose one of the four events to write about: wrestling, footrace, long jumping, and javelin or discuss throwing. The athlete will then use their white board to brainstorm a story about their event and how they did competing in it. The reporter will use their white board to write down three questions to ask the athlete for their news story. 

Once they have written, they will then conduct an "eye-witness" interview. The reporter will need to write down notes from the interview and make sure their questions get answered. When they complete this portion, they will switch and complete the process again but in the other role. I remind the class that they each should have notes from their interview to write their news story. 

Extra Extra... Read All About It

15 minutes

The next phase is writing the news article. Students will do this portion on their own using the notes they compiled. There are various templates that can be used from the internet to complete the writing portion of the project. I used a template that was part of the Evan-Moor Greece Unit. In this unit there is a template for the Olympic News. This is what I used because their is specific section on it for the eyewitness account. 

Students will now use their notes to complete their news story. Before they begin, I help the class brainstorm titles for newspapers and possible headlines. I put these on the white board and then have them work on the rest of the article from their notes. I walk around and help student and offer prompting when needed.