Now more than ever, it is essential that students understand the importance of digital citizenship. It’s part of being career-ready. It’s part of utilizing tools like the internet effectively for education. And it’s part of understanding the boundaries of recreational use. What is digital citizenship ? Being a good digital citizen means understanding the responsibilities associated with technology, particularly the internet, but also how it all applies to computers and devices in general. What does it cover ? I think our first thought is cyber safety. But digital citizenship is so much more than that. It’s also how students use the internet to find help for school. It’s how they interact when searching for a job or emailing professionally. It’s what they post to social media. It’s knowing when it is appropriate to use technology (digital wellness). And it’s knowing how to show empathy when behaving online.  Why is it important? We are absolutely in a world where access to technology is...
One of the most critical middle school and high school journalism lessons you can teach your students journalists is about the main news determinants. Before student journalists know how to write, they should know what to write about. Picture this: as a journalism adviser in charge of your school's newspaper, you engage your students in a brainstorming session about potential stories for the upcoming issue. While your students have great ideas and pitch exciting ideas for stories, their ideas lean more toward detailed feature pieces or even argument essay topics. At the end of the brainstorming session, while you may have a long list of topics for your students to write about, your students missed the mark on identifying truly newsworthy stories for your school. Teaching students about the news determinants and what makes a story or topic newsworthy for publication in the school newspaper is one of the first lessons I teach my journalism students at the start of every school year. ...
Taking on the task of teaching The Odyssey is a massive undertaking. One might even say it’s an epic undertaking. Although a popular Greek tale with tons of films and visual renditions, getting through the text can look overwhelming to students. That’s why I love keeping a list of interactive and engaging activities handy to help break up the monotony of reading through a long text and help students keep track of important details. 1. Character Analysis Activities There are a multitude of characters to track and understand can become a long list that is hard to track. Give students a character analysis activity to help visualize relationships, keep track of important characters, and study later. I have a Character Analysis Interactive Notebook activity ( this one is digital), and a Character Graphic Organizer (each character has 2 organizers). Top it off with an analysis essay that you can find here .  2. Comic Strip  A fun way to unleash artistic creativity, have students create co...
So, you are a brand new middle school or high school journalism adviser. Whether you’ve signed up to teach journalism or were assigned the class, teaching students journalism and advising the school newspaper can be a gratifying aspect of your career. High school journalism holds a special place in my heart. I was on the newspaper staff all four years of my high school career, eventually serving as my school paper’s editor-in-chief and studying journalism in college. And now, I continue my work in scholastic journalism by teaching journalism at my school. Coming in as a new or first-time journalism adviser can be daunting, especially if you have no prior journalism experience. If you are looking for a great teaching resource to get you started, my journalism teaching unit has enough materials to get you started. Here are ten tips for new journalism advisers. 1. Join scholastic journalism organizations One of the best ways to become more acquainted with scholastic journalism is by join...
As teachers, it is our job to help students prepare for career, college, or whatever goals they have beyond our doors. Many times it seems there is a push for focusing on our students who are college-bound, but we really need to present all options for students so they can make the best decision for their future successes. Read on for some tips on how you can help students prepare. 1. Explore different paths to success We need to quit pushing college as the only option for our students to pursue. I have seen many schools focus on college readiness, even going as far as highlighting these students on the school’s social media pages. There is nothing wrong with celebrating, but what about students heading into trade school or on-site training? College isn’t the only road, and being a teacher willing and ready to help students explore their options is a teacher that will make a big difference for all students. 2. Allow students to explore options In addition to presenting options, student...