Wednesday, July 3, 2013
Best of 2013 So Far...5 Places for Kids to Learn About the News
When I was a student in Mrs. Simmons's second grade classroom one of the things that I looked forward to every week was the arrival of the Scholastic Weekly Reader. I loved read the stories about news from other parts of the world (I guess I was destined to become a social studies teacher). Today, students don't have to wait for the Scholastic Weekly Reader to appear in their teacher's mailbox. Here are five student-friendly news sites to use in your current events lesson plans.
Go Go News is a news website designed for elementary school students. The site features many short news stories that can be read and listened to. The stories that Go Go News covers aren't hard, breaking news stories. The stories are more of a interesting and educational nature.
Teaching Kids News is a news site developed for use in elementary school and middle school classrooms. Teaching Kids News features timely and relevant news stories written on a level that students can comprehend. Each article is accompanied by a set of discussion questions, writing prompts, reading prompts, and vocabulary words.
Youngzine is an online source of news, sports, and entertainment stories for elementary school students. Students will find stories to read and videos to watch in each of the information categories. Each news story is accompanied by a Google Map that has a placemark indicating where the story takes place.
CNN Student News is an excellent resource for middle school and high school current events lessons. The roughly ten minute episodes feature US stories, a world news stories, a "shout out" to a classroom, and a quick quiz. Transcripts for each show are available for download as are suggested viewing questions to cover with your students.
One of my favorite features on the BBC New website is the Day in the Day in Pictures. The Day in Pictures displays a small collection of photographs from around the world. The pictures capture a mix of serious news stories and lighter cultural stories. The Day in Pictures collections are part of a much larger resource from the BBC simply called In Pictures. The In Pictures resource provides hundreds of images in a variety collections and slideshows about current events throughout the world. Some of the slide shows even include narration. All of the images include captions explaining what is happening in the picture and a little background knowledge about the event being photographed.