USING NEWSPAPERS IN THE CLASSROOM Language Learning Resources Mauricio Gutiérrez Julián Andrés Rodríguez Language Learning Resources – USING NEWSPAPERS IN THE CLASSROOM
Newspapers in education
Why using newspapers in the classroom?
Advantages and Disadvantages
Teaching activities with newspapers
Creating teaching activities with newspapers
Language Learning Resources – USING NEWSPAPERS IN THE CLASSROOM
NEWSPAPERS IN EDUCATION Newspapers in education is a concept dating back to June 8, 1795 when the Portland (Maine) Eastern Herald published the following editorial: “Much has been said and written on the utility of newspaper; but one principal advantage which might be derived from these publications has been neglected; we mean that of reading them in schools, and by the children in families.” 1930s and 1940s The New York Times and the Milwaukee Journal sponsor programs that are dedicated to providing newspapers and curriculum aides to the classroom teacher.
NEWSPAPERS IN EDUCATION II Nowadays about 900 newspaper companies provide newspapers to schools in their local areas. This program started in the 1960s and is called Newspapers In Education (NIE) NIE program is one in which newspapers are distributed to schools or other institutions that conduct educational programs. NIE is designed to make reading and newspapers a fun and profitable learning experience; the key being fun. Newspapers in Colombia During the last couple of years El Colombiano newspaper from Medellin has been publishing a daily section called: Antioquia Bilingüe. http://www.elcolombiano.com/bilingue.asp?NM=Noticias
WHY USING NEWSPAPERS IN THE CLASSROOM? They are inexpensive. They are readily obtainable. They are versatile. They can be used for individual or cooperative activities. They are a source of current information. Using them in your classroom is a method of recycling.
Newspapers introduce students to the cultural and linguistic aspects.
They can be used for individual and group work.
The content is updated.
Learners can internalize a full range of world background knowledge, language conventions and vocabulary by exposure through reading.
Newspapers encourage learners to read in English outside the classroom.
The adaptation of the activities is time consuming.
Sometimes the vocabulary used is complex for learners, especially beginners.
After a short period of time, most of the news are not updated and they can not be interesting for learners.
ACTIVITIES ACCORDING TO THE LEARNERS’ LEVEL
Have students cut out pictures of things they like in the newspapers and then write sentences about the pictures.
Have students write sentences about the pictures using prepositions to describe the spatial relationships.
Collect newspaper photographs of people and have students make up stories about the people.
Analyze advertisements to discuss the way prices vary from store to store. Students may report their findings by writing a paragraph.
ACTIVITIES ACCORDING TO THE LEARNERS’ LEVEL II
Have students read an article that describes a problem and discuss the problem’s cause and effects.
Follow a news item over a period of time and discuss the events that occur.
Have students work in pairs, interviewing each other about an article in the newspaper.
TEACHING ACTIVITIES WITH NEWSPAPERS * Parts of Speech When teaching the parts of speech to your class, use the newspaper to reinforce word identification. * Main Idea Select a story from the newspaper that will be of interest to your students. Read the story aloud to your class. Discuss the main idea of the story. * Sequencing, Story structure Give each of your students a newspaper. Have them select an article to read which clearly demonstrates an introduction, a body containing several paragraphs, and a conclusion.
TEACHING ACTIVITIES WITH NEWSPAPERS II * Who, What, When, Where, Why Have Ss select an article to read. On a piece of paper have them list the five W's. Next to each have them write the information from the article that pertains to each. * Visualizing Have them select an article to read. Give each student a piece of paper. Have them fold the paper into six or eight blocks, numbering each. Tell them they are to retell the article in pictures, no words allowed. When they are finished, have them share their visual articles with the class. See if the other students can retell the article from the pictures.
TEACHING ACTIVITIES WITH NEWSPAPERS III * Locating Specific Information Have your students turn to the sports section of a newspaper and select an article. On a sheet of paper have them list the following information: TITLE OF ARTICLE NAME OF SPORT TEAM NAMES FINAL SCORES SOMETHING INTERESTING OR UNUSUAL ABOUT THE GAME OR EVENT * Fact and Opinion Have your students look through a newspaper to locate an article that expresses factual information and another that expresses an opinion. Have them explain their decisions.
AMERICAN & WORLDWIDE NEWS SITES www.cbsnews.com www.nytimes.com www.abcnews.go.com www.buenosairesherald.com www.thestar.com www.elcolombiano.com.co www.miami.com www.cnn.com www.usatoday.com www.timesonline.co.uk www.chinadaily.com.cn www.russiatoday.com Taken from: http://www.refdesk.com/paper.html
The wide selection of on-line newspapers, being the digital versions of the printed ones, help learners have access to the news of the English Speaking countries at extremely low cost, high speed and enourmous variety.
Using news for teaching materials help learners to improve their reading skills, enrich the vocabulary, gain some cultural knowledge and be up-to-date with the current situation in the whole world.
Papers open numerous possibilities both for self development and for enriching the existing coursebook with additional materials.