School Happenings News Article

By: Esther Wojcicki

Esther Wojcicki is an esteemed author and educator who founded the Media Arts program at Palo Alto High School, which she successfully grew into the largest journalism program in the nation. Wojcicki will be sharing her expertise with Pressto to create assignments that get your students activating their communication, collaboration, critical thinking, and creativity skills.

Lesson Overview

‍Students will practice critical thinking skills as they write about an experience they had at school.

Get Started

  • Head over to Pressto to make a copy of the Pressto assignment, adapt it as needed, and assign it to your students.
  • Print a copy of the News Article graphic organizer for each student.

Tips for using this assignment with your students:

- With your students, brainstorm a list of events or experiences they might write about and display the list on the board.

- Focus on the writing process:

   > Planning: Give students time to talk with others who experienced the event to gather information about it from other perspectives. Instruct students to record the details on the graphic organizer using the following questions to guide them:

  • What happened?
  • Who was involved?
  • When did it happen?
  • Where did it happen?
  • Why did it happen?
  • How did it happen?

   > Drafting: Students should include only the most important details in their article. Here are some tips for helping students do this asthey draft:

  • Help students get started by summarizing the answers to the questions of who, what, where, when, why and how in the Lead section of the article.

Writing Instruction Routines

For more tips to guide students before, during, and after writing, take a look at the Writing Instruction Routines page.

Common Core Anchor Standards

CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.CCRA.W.2 Write informative/explanatory texts to examine and convey complex ideas and information clearly and accurately through the effective selection, organization, and analysis of content.
CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.CCRA.W.3 Write narratives to develop real or imagined experiences or events using effective technique, well-chosen details and well-structured event sequences.
CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.CCRA.W.4 Produce clear and coherent writing in which the development, organization, and style are appropriate to task, purpose, and audience.
CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.CCRA.W.5 Develop and strengthen writing as needed by planning, revising, editing, rewriting, or trying a new approach.
CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.CCRA.W.6 Use technology, including the Internet, to produce and publish writing and to interact and collaborate with others.
CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.CCRA.W.7 Conduct short as well as more sustained research projects based on focused questions, demonstrating understanding of the subject under investigation.
CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.CCRA.W.10 Write routinely over extended time frames (time for research, reflection, and revision) and shorter time frames (a single sitting or a day or two) for a range of tasks, purposes, and audiences.