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The Speed of News: Are You a Star Reporter?

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This activity introduces students to the variety of places a good reporter goes to for information and the importance of documenting sources.

GRADE LEVEL: Elementary school

TIME: 30-60 minutes

MATERIALS: Are You a Star Reporter worksheet (download), black board or large paper to compile student answers for all to see, a compilation of varied news sources for students to explore (or consider assigning the activity for homework)


  1. For an in-class activity, identify a variety of sources — newspapers, bookmarks to online stories, YouTube clips and websites, etc. — for students to examine.
  2. Print copies of the worksheet, one per pair for an in-class activity or one per student for homework assignment.


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Overview PDF DOC
Worksheets PDF DOC
Extensions PDF DOC
Full Packet PDF DOC

To request a large print or Braille version, call 202.292.6650.


  1. Divide students into pairs and distribute a selection of sources and the worksheet to each twosome.
  2. Tell them: One of the ways reporters find out information for their stories and develop news story ideas is to regularly search through a variety sources, such as in print, online, and on TV and radio.  Explain that it is important for reporters to document where they find information, not only the type of source (such as magazine) but the specific name (e.g. Time magazine). This careful documentation helps the reporter keep track of their research. But, more importantly, by identifying their sources they are upholding an important journalistic standard: always let your audience know where you got your information!
  3. Direct the pairs to work together, but designate one of the students to write their answers on the worksheet.
  4. Once the worksheets are completed, compile the answers from the different pairs on the board for all students to see.
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  • What sources did their research reveal?
  • Are there any other sources of information that are missing from the list?
  • When documenting sources, is there additional information that would be important to record (for example, date or author)?  Why would those be important to include?



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