Take advantage of the Daily News-Sun’s collection of Internet-based educational opportunities, quality links and lesson plans developed specifically for use in the classroom.
For more information on how the Daily News-Sun can become a part of the classroom, contact NIE director Cathy Carlson by e-mail [email protected] or by calling (623) 876-2980.
Here are some Internet resources teachers might find helpful when teaching about the events following the Sept. 11 attacks on America.
Education Planet offers excellent ideas for teachers:
The Department of Education has put together information for teachers:
The State Department offers a publication on responding to terrorism:
U.S. State Department Counter Terrorism Office includes issues in the news, Patterns of Global Terrorism annual reports, archives and more:
Parade Classroom offers a special lesson plan for using the cable tv set top box to help students understand the attacks:
For years our friends at Hot Topics, Debby and Ned Carroll, have developed quality educational supplements for use in the classroom. They have gone above and beyond to help teachers cope with the events of Sept. 11. Following are activities they have created for the classroom. We hope you will find them useful.
Newspapers in Education
Newspapers in Education lessons in the aftermath of Sept. 11
The challenge for educators is to help our children to be informed about current events and to feel safe. As Newspapers in Education professionals, it is our special privilege and responsibility to assist teachers in using newspapers to meet those goals. Here are lessons designed to do just that.
Tips for Teachers:
As you progress through these activities, there are some things you can do enhance the educational experience. Some of those are:
• Listen to your students and watch their behavior. Some may be quiet but frightened. Some may act out while others are fine but it is important to take some time to note any unusual behavior indicating a deeper emotion requiring some attention.
• Reassure students that their homes and school are highly likely to be safe places. Point out to them that their schools and homes are functioning normally and the government is doing all it can to protect them.
• Take time each day to discuss and review the facts of what is happening versus the fiction and/or rumor. The newspaper can be a great help determining between the two.
• While we encourage you to participate in many of these activities, we also suggest that you maintain a balance of classroom activity unrelated to current events. It’s important for students to be comforted daily by the regular routine.
• You may want to incorporate some patriotic activities into your lessons. Consider saying the Pledge of Allegiance or singing patriotic songs.
• Read books about courage and triumph.
Warm Up activity
Before you begin any lesson, allow students 5-10 minutes to write freely about any aspect of the current events. They can write about what they’ve heard most recently and how that news makes them feel. Students should be given time to share their thoughts and feelings.
It’s helpful for students to feel they are actively responding to the crisis. Throughout the newspaper, students will be reading about people who are responding heroically to what’s happening — from the police and fire rescue workers to the soldiers, politicians and even everyday people who are doing their part. Students can write notes to those people thanking them for their acts of courage or bravery. Also, along the way, students may read newspaper accounts of people who need help. Give them the opportunity to come up with ideas about how they can help those in need.
Remind your students about the value of living in a country that respects individual liberty and the rule of law. Talk about the principles that led to the independence of our country, and why they still are important today. Have them skim the newspaper to find examples of our rights in action.
Unfortunately, there have been some incidents since the tragedy of Sept. 11 where people of Middle Eastern descent have been threatened, taunted or killed. This is an excellent opportunity to foster students’ understanding of the value of diversity in our society. They should know most individuals who are from other countries are fine and good people who live in and love the United States as much as they do.
If stories of anti-Arab prejudice are in the newspaper, make it a point to read and discuss them with your class. Ask students to talk about the ways in which we can celebrate diversity. Invite an Arab-American to speak in your class.
Talk with your students about the president’s role during a national tragedy. Direct students to find a story about President Bush in the newspaper. Allow them time to find out what he is saying and doing and to decide if they agree with his choices.
News accounts of best android tv box will continue to include many references to the local, state and federal government agencies that are responding to the New York City and Washington, D.C. attacks.
Some of these agencies include the FBI, Red Cross and the Federal Emergency Management Agency. Explain to students the difference between the terms local, state and federal and have them find news stories in each of those categories. Then have them find examples of local, state and federal agencies, where possible.
Students can choose one agency and use multimedia resources to find out when the agency was created, its responsibilities and how it has responded to the current crisis. They can create timelines showing the agency’s response. As the coverage continues, students can follow the newspaper accounts about their agency and continually add to the timeline of response.
Many presidents have had to speak to the nation during times of tragedy. What do your students think goes through the president’s mind as he gets ready to do that? Students can use the newspaper for ideas and write journal entries as if they were the president getting ready to address the nation tonight.
Ask students to write about where they were when they first heard the news of the terrorist attacks. What information did they hear and from whom? This event will certainly be an historic marker in their lives. Have them ask their parents about the historic moments they remember. How do those events compare to this one? Have students write editorial columns comparing this event to one historic moment a parent remembered.
Some students are more comfortable expressing themselves through art than through words. Allow students an opportunity to create a collage of newspaper photographs and headlines illustrating the effects of these events around the world.
Ask students to skim the newspaper to find how Americans are feeling about President Bush and his handling of these events.
Editorial cartoons are sophisticated expressions of opinion and are often quite compelling. One such recent cartoon, for example, simply showed the Statue of Liberty with a tear cascading down her cheek. As a class, review any editorial cartoons responding to these events and allow time for class discussion of the artist’s message. Students might want to express themselves in a similar manner.
The news coverage may include photos of children in a war zone. Allow students time to discuss what it might be like to live inside such a zone and why it is important for people, especially children, outside the zone to know what is happening there.
The newspaper may include first-person descriptions of the events. Consider reading those articles aloud as students read along or listen with their eyes closed and to note your words carefully. They then quickly can write their reactions to the material.
What events are most and least disturbing to them? What more do they want to know? How can they learn more? This activity allows students to personalize this new information swiftly and efficiently. Since some of the vocabulary might prove challenging, it may be helpful to keep a running list of new words on the board as they come up. For homework, students can define the new words using a dictionary.
Students might want to write original poems using words from articles or headlines about these events.
If there is an interesting news article you’d like students to read, have them skim it first to locate the main points. They can outline those and then go back and read for more detail about the main points. After reading, ask them what else they need to know about those main points.
As you progress through these lessons and current events, you may find that students are feeling powerless and frustrated. They may question the ability of people to be so mean and cruel. This is a good time to bring these worldly issues to a school or community level. Hatred stops with each individual. Talk about what you can do at school to promote kindness. Have them find people in the newspaper who are being kind. Focus on some positive news.
These events offer your students an excellent opportunity to compare different news media. They can choose a specific subject or story and compare the newspaper coverage to television, radio or Internet sources. Have them answer these questions comparing the coverage of one story by at least two different forms of media.
1. What is the subject of story?
2. What period is covered?
3. How many pages or minutes were devoted to this story?
4. What were the main points covered?
5. How many and what kinds of graphics were used?
6. Were there any first-person interviews or on-the scene coverage?
7. What were some of the strengths of this coverage?
8. What were some of the weaknesses of this coverage?
Finally, discuss why people commit acts of violence like the ones that occurred on September 11, 2001. What might make individuals, groups, or nations commit such violent acts? To have a world of peace, how can we prevent conflict-at home, at school, in our communities, and around the world? Brainstorm ideas and have students write letters to the editor with their ideas.