Reflection: Student Ownership Tangerine Times, Pt I: Establishing and Drafting in Editorial Teams - Section 3: Working with the Ideas


Sometimes I feel like I am in a very small contingent of people who still reads the "actual" newspaper every day.  Do I read the entire paper, cover to cover?  No, but I do read quite a bit of a national paper on a daily basis, and I read every edition of my local paper.  Most of my students have never read more than an article, if that, and -- if they have read news stories -- they probably did so on a smartphone or computer.  

This brings me to the question: Is this type of assignment really relevant anymore? 

I think so. First of all, the newspaper writing itself is just a vehicle for examining the events in the story.  Instead of having them address a question like "Identify all of the crimes that were committed in the novel and explain how they were connected," the student who is doing the crime report can do exactly that, but in a more creative way.  The students practice planning and producing a single product using negotiation and drawing on their own individual strengths.  And, the act of pasting up a paper is both fun and challenging -- and a real opportunity for me to discover who has an extra dose of spatial intelligence (this is often the student who may struggle in other areas, so it can be a nice time to shine.)

We could type our articles up and just post them on Moodle, like blog posts or online articles.  A "virtual" paper would be quicker and easier.  But I have a strong connection to the printed word; I hope that some of my students will understand and appreciate the tactile, visual pleasure of a real newspaper...while they still have some time to enjoy one.

  Newspaper articles: So 20th Century?
  Student Ownership: Newspaper articles: So 20th Century?
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Tangerine Times, Pt I: Establishing and Drafting in Editorial Teams

Unit 10: Tangerine, by Edward Bloor
Lesson 5 of 6

Objective: SWBAT create original newspaper articles detailing plot developments in the novel, Tangerine.

Big Idea: Extra! Extra! Writing newspaper articles helps isolate and unpack story events.

  Print Lesson
English / Language Arts, Reading, symbolism (Literary Terms), novel, story elements, character development
  50 minutes
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