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Creating a Digital Newspaper

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Keywords: digital newspapers in education
Subject(s): Photography, Writing, Special Needs, Podcasting, Technology, Video, Grammar, Journalism
Grades P-K through 5
School: Lakeview School, Edison, NJ
Planned By: Carol Sherman
Original Author: Carol Sherman, Edison
Activity: Digital Newspaper
Time length: 4-6 weeks
Objective: To create a digital school newspaper for the school and parents.
Materials: newspaper, computer, some office equipment. digital camera, ,web camera, disability software

• Identify sections of the newspaper
• Generate use of nouns, verbs, and adjectives, adverbs
• Form grammatically correct sentences using subject-verb-object format
• Write topic sentence and supporting sentences.
• Use correct punctuation and capitalization
• Develop typing/computer skills
• Taking photographs/downloading pics
• Create a podcasts
• Create quick cam videos


1. Discuss with the students that they are going to write a school newspaper. Have a newspaper on hand and go over the different sections in a newspaper.

•Brainstorm what sections the students would like to include in their newspaper

School News Report
Choose an event coming up at school. (example Halloween, back to school night). Research information such as date, time, what will be happening.

Student Interview
Choose a student to interview. Generate a list of questions to ask. Schedule an appointment and interview the student.

Opinion Page
Choose a topic that is important to you or a current news related story or event. Research and state your opinion on the topic

Sports Page
Choose a professional or school sports team or player to write about. Use the web to research information.

Movie/TV Review
Write a review on a chosen movie or TV show.

Star Corner
Choose a celebrity to research and write about.

Find a few jokes or comic you would like (in books, on the web)
Try it out on some friends to see if they laugh.

Create advertisements related to school events or sales

Crossword Puzzle
Choose a theme and create your own puzzles using crossword puzzle software. Some free programs are available on the web.

Have students volunteer to write for one of the above listed sections of the paper. You may have more than one student working on a section.

2. Begin the writing process. Students will begin researching and writing on chosen topics.

Modifications: Use semantic maps to organize thoughts.

Use “asking questions” (listed below) to help students generate thoughts.

• Who?
• What you see or hear?
• When/Where?
• What happened?
• Can you describe it?
• How did you feel?
* add you own questions to assist the students in generating writing ideas.

Modifications/Partial Participation:
Some students may only be able to generate short phrases with 2-3 words. That’s fine! Assistance can be given to form complete sentences.

3. Putting the text together

• Begin writing sentences with ideas generated from semantic maps.
• Put the sentences in paragraph form using the topic sentence and supporting sentences.

4. Typing text articles/using video

• Have students type articles on the computer
• Have students use web cam to create short videos for newspaper
• Have students create podcasts of of articles

Modifications/Partial Participation:
• Assistive technology hardware/software to interface with computer
• The student may be able to type the entire text or some part of it.
• Video/podcasts work well for students who can’t read. Also use text readers so students in other classrooms can have the text articles read to them.

5. Graphics/Animation/Photography

• Have students choose a graphics/animations using clip art.

• Have students go out and take photos related to newspaper topics

6. Putting it all together- assigning jobs

• Photographers

Create a folder on your desktop and download the photos. Insert photos into template next to articles

• Create Videos/Podcasts

• Editors
This is a great job for students to work on capitalization, grammar, and punctuation skills.

• Copying
Break jobs down to small tasks
For example, copying may include;
• Lifting the cover
• Placing paper on copier glass
• Closing cover
• Entering number of copies/and or other functions i.e. sorting,staple
• Pressing start
• Remove copies

Modifications/Partial Participation:

* The student may be able to perform all, some or one of the tasks. It is important to allow them to actively participate.

• Deliveries
A multisensory and motivating approach to generate language skills through the use of various technologies.for students with multiple disabilities.
Materials: Animation, Screen Capture, Clip Art, Inspiration, Podcasting, Camera/Video Accessories, Video Tools, Portable, Sound Libraries, Speech and Language