Lesson 2: The Five Ws of Journalism
Students will learn about the five Ws of journalism. They will also practice writing and reporting skills.
•Understanding the writing process (newspapers)
•Gathering and using information for research purposes
•Understanding how people have helped make the community a better place
For a complete list of standards, click here (PDF).
1. Write the word article on the board. Guide students to define article as “a story in a newspaper.” Explain that people who write articles are called journalists. Tell students that most articles are based on facts.
2. Distribute Printable 2 Reporting: Live from the Scene! (PDF) . Point out the box listing the five Ws of article-writing. Review each W and its definition. Tell students that journalists use the five Ws to organize facts in an article. If time permits, ask students to share sentences that answer one or more of the five Ws. Ask other students to tell the class which Ws were answered.
3. Direct students to Part 1 of the reproducible. Read the directions aloud, then allow students 5–10 minutes to complete the task. Regroup and review the list of five Ws as a class.
4. Instruct students to use their lists from Part 1 to complete the second part of the reproducible. Give students 15 minutes to complete the paragraph. Then, ask for volunteers to read their paragraphs aloud.
Bring in copies of current newspaper articles for students to review. Divide students into groups of 3–5 and provide each group with an article. Tell students to read the lead paragraph of the article and find the five Ws in the paragraph. Have each group share the five Ws in their paragraph with the class.
Teach your students about an important part of journalism: interviewing! Distribute Bonus Activity 2: Explore the Past With People! (PDF) . Review the instructions with your class and answer questions they may have about the interview process.