It’s important for our kids to be aware of what is going on in the world. Researching current events is a great way for kids to connect with their community and learn to stay informed.
During the school year, each of my kids are assigned to write weekly current event reports. I want them to know what is going on in the news, and how to gather information from different sources to form their own opinions. That feels increasingly challenging with political tensions and civil unrest.
The assignment is a bit different for my high school boys compared to my middle school daughter. I expect my high school students to do more research on a subject to form their own opinion, as opposed to accepting the opinion of a single news outlet. With last year’s highly publicized incident regarding the Covington kids’ confrontation at the Lincoln Memorial, my son came to understand the importance of considering multiple sources.
High School Weekly Assignment:
- Choose a top news topic.
- Read a minimum of three articles on the topic from different news sources.
- Write a report and be prepared to discuss your findings and opinions.
High School Written Report Should Include:
- The topic of chosen news articles.
- The date or time period of the news. Is it current, old, or ongoing?
- News sources used.
- A summary of the main points.
- How the news sources agreed or disagreed over main points.
- The significance of the topic.
- What opinion have you formed regarding the topic?
My daughter will have a more gentle view of news and stories that are not as politically driven. I will view the standard news site with her to choose a topic. She has always enjoyed youth sites that are less about current events, and more about the news of her interests. For example, she found a fascinating article last year about a rarely seen wild cat in Africa. Her reports this year will alternate between current events and interest-driven news reports. She is using News Report and Current Event forms to document her findings as she transitions into writing longer reports.
Click on the links if you would like to use either form for your students.
Middle School Weekly Assignment and Report:
- Find a news topic.
- Read one or more articles on the topic.
- Complete a News Report or Current Event form. Be prepared to discuss your findings and opinions.
Standard Current News Sources with Free Access:
- CNN-10 – is a 10-minute news show. It replaced CNN Student News.
- CBN News – provides news from a Christian perspective.
- The Blaze – as one of the nation’s largest independent media companies, it offers pro-America and pro-free speech programming.
- Student News Daily– offers daily news stories with critical thinking questions. It does cite meeting common core requirements for those that find that important.
- PBS News Hour Extra – has a mission of providing current news to middle and high school students and teachers. They also offer educational resources.
- Knowhere News – is new to us this year. They boast of reporting straight facts, and not opinions, for critical thinkers.
News Sources for Younger Students:
- WORLDkids – states they are a Christian current events program for children 7-10. It’s fun for older kids looking for short articles too. They also offer WORLDteen which we’ve only recently learned about and have not yet explored. There is a login option, but we’ve had no problem viewing articles without an acccount.
- DOGONews – wants to provide kids with safe online access. Available news articles cover current events, science, and social studies. They have a paid membership option for additional materials.
- ScienceNewsforStudents – is new to us this year. They state they are dedicated to providing age-appropriate science news to students, parents, and educators. In our initial use, we have found intriguing science news.
There are additional student news sites available for a membership fee. Be sure to preview any sites you allow your kids to access.
Researching news and current events are great ways to get kids engaged in their community and world. Use my News Report or Current Event forms to help get your kids started. If you already write current event reports, please leave a comment if you have any favorite news websites.