- Several newspapers
- Chart paper and marker
- Drawing and writing materials
- Alphabet rubber stamps and/or stencils computer (optional)
- Drawing paper
Objective: Children will learn about the different parts of a newspaper, types of information found in a newspaper and how writing is developed for a newspaper. They will work together to create their own class newspaper.
1. Ask children to share what they know about newspapers. Why do people read newspapers? What type of information is found in a newspaper? Record children's responses on chart paper.
2. Bring a newspaper to class to show children the different sections and information found in a newspaper. Discuss how the information found in a newspaper is "current"-that is, the "newest" news goes into a paper. Record the name of the newspaper at the top of a piece of chart paper. Create a list of the different sections found in the newspaper and explain that different writers are responsible for specific sections of the newspaper.
3. Explain to children that they will work together to create their own newspaper all about their classroom. Invite children to think of a name for their newspaper and assist them in choosing sections that they will be responsible for writing or drawing.
4. Meet with children in small groups to assist them in planning their sections and gathering their information. Children may need to refer to local newspapers or Internet sites to gather some of their information (for instance, about weather or children's films or television programs). Some children may need assistance in developing and conducting interviews to obtain newsworthy information. Children can use drawings or photography to depict current events such as a great block-building project, new staff member, or new baby in a classmate's family. Some children may enjoy developing a comic strip for the newspaper or creating advertisements.
5. Provide children with drawing paper, drawing materials, and lettering tools and assist them in writing, dictating, and editing their work. Work with children to develop a layout for their newspaper. Children can cut and paste their work onto the large sheet of newsprint paper pre-folded to create a newspaper layout. Children can take turns taking their paper home to share with their families.
Social Studies: Visit a Publisher. Plan a class trip to a local newspaper to meet the people associated with the production of a newspaper. The trip can be planned prior to or during the development of the children's class newspaper. Children can plan their questions, take photographs, and develop a book or display to document their trip.
The Paperboy by Dav Pilkey (Orchard Books, 1999)
30 Collaborative Books for Your Class to Make and Share by Mary Beth Spann (Scholastic Inc.)
Why Write? by Daniel Moreton and Samantha Berger
This activity originally appeared in the February, 2001 issue of Early Childhood Today.