Contemporary Career & Elective Courses / Middle School Journalism: Tell Your Story

Middle School Journalism: Tell Your Story

Are you someone who likes to get the story straight? Do you always want to know more? Who? What? When? Where? How? These are the details that make for a great story. Knowing how to find these key facts and then write them up in a way that makes it easy for others to read about it is the skill of a true journalist. In Middle School Journalism: Tell Your Story, you’ll learn how ask the right questions, look for the details, and find the story in any situation. You’ll learn how to gather information effectively, organize ideas, format stories for media production, and edit your articles. Get ready to break that news!

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Course Highlights

  • Learn how to format stories for different media.
  • Investigate how to gather information about events and issues.
  • Examine how to organize and edit the information you gather.
  • Explore what how to create engaging, impactful stories.

Units at a Glance

Unit 1: What is Journalism?

In this unit, we will learn all about the world of journalism. We will discover what journalism is and who is involved in the process. We will also learn about different types of journalism and media, including newspapers, magazines, electronic media and photojournalism, and the different type of news they present.

Unit 2: Analyzing Media

In this unit, we will discover why and how certain types of stories appear on the news. We will learn that while the news is supposed to stick to the facts, sometimes reporters include elements in the stories that are designed to help us think a certain way. By gaining an understanding of what makes something newsworthy and learning how to analyze the media, we will learn to look beyond those tricks and make our own decisions and judgments about the stories in the news.

Unit 3: Gathering Information

In this unit, we will discover how journalists gather information and the types of sources they use when reporting the news. We will also discover the importance of finding the right sources, avoiding sources that could lead reporters astray and focusing on finding credible sources of information. In order to report on the news, journalists must have news to report. We will learn how quality journalists find information and use those techniques to find information of our own.

Unit 4: Organizing Information

In this unit, we will learn how journalists take the information they have gathered and organize it so they can write an article. We will also discover the different types of articles journalists can write and the purposes they have for writing. This will help us understand why journalists choose particular organizational techniques. We will then be able to determine which organizational technique is best for each type of news story or purpose.

Unit 5: Writing an Article

In this unit, we will discover what goes into writing an article. We will review the main methods writers use to organize an article and then go over an article’s most important parts. Articles must be written in a specific way, so we will learn how to write an article with the correct point of view and using an appropriate voice. This unit will also cover how journalists revise their articles and make sure they meet their deadlines.

Unit 6: Preparing a Newscast

In this unit, we will learn all about the world of broadcast journalism. We will discover the different types of newscasts and learn how to prepare and organize a newscast. We will also identify the different story forms used in broadcast news and learn what factors are most important when writing a story that will appear on the news. The on-air news stories you see may seem simple, but you’ll see that a lot of elements go into preparing a short newscast.

Unit 7: Editing an Article or Newscast

Once a news story has been written, it must go through an editing process. We will learn all about the editing processes for both print and broadcast journalism. This unit will cover the different types of editors and what they look for. We will also talk about some of the common errors found in both articles and newscasts and learn ways to avoid issues such as plagiarism and fabrication. If a news piece is not edited properly, it can become a major issue for a journalist, a newspaper and/or a TV news show.

Unit 8: Media, the Law and Ethics

In this unit, we will discover some of the laws and responsibilities that guide journalists as they publish the news. We will learn about the First Amendment and how it protects journalists in the United States, but will also discover that some countries do not allow journalists the same freedoms. We will also discover some of the laws journalists must abide by and discuss the role that ethics plays in the field of journalism.

Unit 9: Media and Society

In this unit, we will discuss the role media plays in society. We will discover how journalists can influence what news people are talking about and how they can affect people’s emotions. We will learn how media journalists reach different types of people and how they make sure they have the news people are listening to. This unit will also introduce us to a new kind of journalist, the internet journalist, and explain how the internet is changing the way the news is discovered and reported.

Unit 10: A History of Journalism

In this unit, we will learn how the news has changed over time. We will discover how and when the first newspapers were created and how the news was spread before newspapers were so easy to find. We will also look at the history of broadcast journalism, discovering when radio, newsreels and televisions became important ways to share the news. From there, we will take a look at the newest form of journalism – internet journalism – and discuss how it has changed the face of journalism and what it means for the future of the news.

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