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Choose the News

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Students understand the process by which news stories are selected for publication and the impact of this process on their understanding of the world around them.

This unit guides students as they explore how the news is chosen, becoming more informed and critical news consumers as they deepen their understanding of the process by which the free press operates. It includes pre- and post-visit activities designed to bracket the Choose the News EDClass, plus a class-specific Newseum gallery guide. (The activities can also be done independent of a visit.) Through these experiences, students get a chance to try being editors and reporters, laying out their own newspapers and investigating what’s news in their community and beyond.

OBJECTIVE: Students understand the process by which news stories are selected for publication and the impact of this process on their understanding of the world around them.

TARGET AUDIENCE: Elementary and middle school

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

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GUIDING QUESTIONS

  • What is news and how does it affect our daily life?
  • Who decides what’s news? Does everyone agree?
  • Why does news differ from one community to another?
  • Why is it important to understand the process behind the news?
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KEY TOPICS & SKILLS

  • The role of the free press in our daily lives
  • How the news is made
  • Current events
  • Media literacy
  • Collaborative decision-making

 

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UNIT CONTENTS

  1. Before Your Visit
    • My Local News: Students learn how to conduct historical and oral research in their communities to discover how the news reflects the readership’s interests.
  2. During Your Visit
    • NewseumED Class – Choose the News: Go behind the scenes to discover how newspaper editors decide what to put on their front pages. Students work in teams to design their own front pages in a race to make deadline.
    • Choose the News Gallery Guide: Students go through the Today’s Front Pages Gallery to understand how the content of a front page reflects community interests, concerns and values.
  3. After Your Visit
    • The Medium Shapes the Message: Students analyze different news sources to gain an understanding of how today’s diverse media environment shapes the information we receive.
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