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Scholastic News Online

Scholastic News Online is a free resource with breaking news and highlights from the print magazine.

Available for grades 1-6, Scholastic News magazine brings high-interest current events and nonfiction to millions of classrooms each week.

Additionally, our subscribers have FREE access to Scholastic News Interactive, an exclusive online learning tool featuring digital editions, videos, interactive features, differentiated articles, and much more.

Teaching a Lesson: Grade 4


These exciting activities will help you and your fourth-graders make the most of Scholastic News Online. Each mini-lesson can be done in one or two class periods and can be repeated as often as you like throughout the school year.

Summarizing Today's News


Students will:

  • summarize a news story so that classmates understand key points.


  • Daily news updates at Scholastic News Online


  1. Activate prior knowledge by discussing why people read the news. Ask: Why is it important for citizens to be knowledgeable about politics, the economy, and other current events? Guide students to understand that informed citizens make smarter decisions about things like whom to vote for or when to sell a home.
  2. Explain that students will be writing a summary of an important news story. Review that a summary should focus on important points. Explain that the important points in a news story are often the answers to the 5 W's (who, what, when, where, why) and one H (how).
  3. Have students log on to Scholastic News Online and point out the "Today's News" section. Have students click on the photo or headline to read the full story. In a journal or notebook, have them write a brief (one paragraph) summary.
  4. Invite one or two students to share their summaries with the class. Have a class discussion about which points most students included in their summaries.

Home Link

If you wish, assign the summaries for homework, and make a student news summary part of your daily morning homeroom routine!

The "Write" Stuff


Students will:

  • write and publish thoughtful responses to nonfiction text.


  • Daily news updates at Scholastic News Online


  1. After students read a daily news report, direct their attention to the critical-thinking question(s) at the end of the story. Have students write a short response to the question.
  2. Encourage students to revise their responses for the traits of good writing, including ideas, organization, voice, word choice, sentence fluency, and mechanics.
  3. Have students submit their responses to the Scholastic News Online student blog section. (Click on "Blog It" at the bottom of each story to type in responses.)


Picture Prompt Writing


Students will:

  • use photos in the news as creative-writing prompts.



  1. Direct students' attention to the weekly "Write the Caption" photo in the Games and Quizzes section. Challenge students to write three captions for the photo and submit a favorite for possible publication.
  2. Explain that many standardized tests use pictures or illustrations to spark creative-writing assignments. Have students choose their favorite caption from step 1 and begin planning a story that explains what is happening in the picture. Advise students that their story should have one or two strong main characters and a clear beginning, middle, and end. It should involve a conflict or challenge that needs to be solved.
  3. Have student volunteers share their stories with the class.


Quiz Show

Objective: Students will:

  • demonstrate understanding of the news.



  1. After students have read the news all week, host a classroom game show to review what they have learned. Divide students into two teams, and print out the News IQ quiz and answers. Explain that the goal of the game is to earn the most points.
  2. Present question 1 and its multiple-choice answers to Team A, and give the team a chance to respond. Allow time for team members to talk, then ask for the team's official answer. If it is correct, award 2 points to Team A. If it is incorrect, give Team B a chance to answer correctly for 1 point. If no team gets the correct answer, award no points.
  3. For question 2, give Team B a chance to respond first. Alternate until the quiz is finished, then tally the teams' earned points.


If you subscribe to Scholastic News, add questions from the print magazine to your news game. Click on "Be a Quiz Whiz" on the magazine's home page for a list of questions from the current issue.

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