Teaching Current Events Help, I'm drowning!!!!!

Discussion in 'Middle School / Junior High' started by luvzkats, Aug 28, 2011.

  1. luvzkats

    luvzkats Rookie

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    Aug 28, 2011

    I was asked to teach one Current Events class for an elective for middle school. There is no curriculum of course for this class nor materials. I know that will all come from the news.

    I need help setting up a daily routine. My brain is just spinning wheels. If you have any ideas please suggest them. Also, if you have ever taught this class I would love to hear from you as well.
     
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  3. Dynamite Boys

    Dynamite Boys Companion

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    Aug 28, 2011

    I don't know how long your class periods are, but CNN student news might be a great way to start the class period. You can then debate some of the issues that are brought up. Do you have access to computers? Maybe students could research the other side of a story that was presented.
     
  4. Maryhf

    Maryhf Connoisseur

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    Aug 28, 2011

    My school uses Tween Tribune (google it) as an activity in computer class. They have to respond to several current events articles on a blog each marking period.
     
  5. mollydoll

    mollydoll Connoisseur

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    Aug 28, 2011

    Can you get copies of syllabi or pacing guides from other departments so you can try to match up some topics with what most of the kids are learning in other classes?

    Obviously, there wouldn't be perfect match up, but if they are talking about DNA or genes in life science, for example, you could have them do current events work about the human genome project or research, etc.
     
  6. bandnerdtx

    bandnerdtx Aficionado

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    Aug 28, 2011

    How long is the class? 18 weeks or 36 weeks?

    Maybe you can start off dividing the units into geographic categories: our town/city, our state, our country, our continent, Europe, the Middle East, Asia, Africa, etc... Or you could divide units by topics: health, family, education, money, war, (let the kids help supply the topics).

    You could also make it a class similar to (or one that supports) world geography.

    I like Molly's idea of pairing with what they are studying in their other classes, though.
     
  7. anthrogirl

    anthrogirl Rookie

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    Aug 29, 2011

    Socratic Seminar. Modify it for what fits for your class, but my 7th grade students loved when we did seminars. It got to the point they wanted to do one for everything, but we had other things to do.
     
  8. kcjo13

    kcjo13 Phenom

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    Aug 29, 2011

    Could you have them set up a daily news show for your school? We don't do it here, but many schools do Channel 1 or something like that. Maybe a daily newsletter?
     
  9. catlover

    catlover Rookie

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    Aug 29, 2011

    I *took* a current events class in high school. The teacher somehow got the local big newspaper to donate enough subscriptions for each student in the class to get a paper each day. He also gave us a list of topics, like "the Middle East" or "natural disasters." We spent part of each period reading the paper, and especially looking for articles in our topic areas. We had to keep a notebook throughout the semester where we pasted in stories in our topic area. I think we had to do some sort of report and presentation where we attempted to make some sort of larger sense out of the series of articles we had collected.

    Don't know if that's helpful, but thought I'd put it out there.

    Good luck with your class!
     
  10. geoteacher

    geoteacher Devotee

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    Aug 29, 2011

    I second the recommendations for using CNN Student News and Socratic seminar/circles. I also use New York Times Upfront with my students. Additionally, we blog about current events as a class. Debate is also an excellent vehicle for generating conversation about controversial topics.
     

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