A newspaper is like a book about things that have recently happened in real life, such as a story about who won a sport's game last night, or animals at the zoo who just had a baby, or the discovery of new medicine for helping sick people. What if you made your own newspaper about what's going on in you and your family's lives around your home?
You might already have newspapers at home that you can look at as examples, if not, here is a picture of one:
Talking About a Newspaper and Choosing a Name
As you look at a newspaper together, you can point out different things such as the different pictures, advertisements, and there being a date and authors name, just like we put the date and our name on work at school!
What would you call your Newspaper? You could name it after your own first name such as "The Daily Jacob" or "The Ashley Post." Or you could name it after your family's last name such as "The Williams Weekly" or "The Anderson Journal." You could even name it after your neighborhood such as "The East Douglas Times." (You can always make a different newspaper, it doesn't have to be the same each time!)
This is like a visual newspaper for our younger learners. Another way of looking at is as a diary of pictures. They can think about what they did each day, what interesting things happened, or what their favorite parts were. You can then write "headlines" and descriptions as they color, cut, paste, and draw to make the news stories. They might also have fun mixing up all their pictures, and then putting them in the order in which they happened, like a sequence of events for the day.
This is a great opportunity to get your learner to try different things. You can discuss how news is often special which makes people want to put it in a newspaper and read about it. Is there a new food they could try? Is there a new way to help or a bigger responsibility they could take on such as cleaning a room? Is there something that has been challenging for them such as brushing their teeth really well or eating a big meal that could be a picture-worthy-news-story?
Learners Who are Practicing Writing
The same concept applies here as it does for the younger learners, but this time around they can practice writing their own headlines! This might be more of a visual newspaper depending on their skill set, but they could practice writing a few words to describe each picture.
If they want the challenge of bigger sentences but they are too complex for them right now, you can write down what they say on scrap paper, and then they can copy it to their "newspaper" themselves.
Another good option for those who are practicing writing is to create "advertisements" in their newspapers. They can go around the house - perhaps the kitchen is best - and find products they want to draw in their newspaper, and then practice writing the name of it. Such as "Buy Frosted Flakes!" or "New Almond Milk." They could also look at their toys, and see what toys they want to draw and write the name of such as "Hotwheels Cars" as another advertisement.
Putting all of that together, it could be a a good challenge is to see if they can try to make this look like a real newspaper, with a headline, picture, some words about the main news story, and then some ads on the sides.
This is a great opportunity for your learner to practice mindfulness and observation. Seeing what goes on around the house and asking, what do my parents do? What do my pets do? What goes on in the neighborhood as I look out the window? What goes on in the backyard as I sit quietly and watch? By encouraging your child to write about real things that happened, they will grow in awareness! Remember that they can do this repeatedly, making many such papers. And if they are encouraged to be patient and observant and watch, they will find many things to write about throughout the day!
Learners Who are Experienced Writers
Those with more writing experience ca take this from a visual newspaper to something that is closer to resembling the real thing. Building off those who are practicing writing, the learners can take this as an opportunity for observing the home and neighborhood, and looking for something interesting, surprising, or unique; perhaps something they never knew or noticed before. They can go into more depth and look at this as more of journalism.
Some things to look for and write about:
What time does the mail man come to my neighborhood? What is the flag for on a mailbox, does he use it?
When do people mostly walk around the neighborhood? Where are they going?
What are the animals doing outside? Anything interesting about the birds? Rabbits? Local pets?
When is the house the quietest? What is everyone doing?
How a Newspaper is Made
A newspaper seems so simple, it's just paper with ink right? Well this is a very interesting video that shows you all the machines and steps that it takes to make a newspaper!