Wednesday, 15 August 2012


A great plus to working at ISSOS was that all teachers taught their classes at the same times and then all 'elective' teachers taught their lessons. This meant that I was free with all the other teachers and inevitably there was some lesson idea sharing after lunch and before lessons etc.

One of the ideas I had heard the Journalism teacher (Sarah Chapman @MsChappers) use in her class was to get students to create a 'headline' for a news article about their time at ISSOS so far (this was roughly around session 5/6). They would then write the article for their headline. So, I took this idea and decided to use it in my class...

I got my students to write down a headline for their time at ISSOS onto a post-it note. I then gave them each a playing card numbered either A, 2, 3, ...8. Half the cards were spades and half were diamonds (my 2 most favourite suits). Then, I asked students to find the person who's card had the same face value as theirs i.e. the A of spades and diamonds were a pair, the 6 of spades and 6 of diamonds were a pair etc. I then got them to swap their headlines and then they had to write the article for their partner's headline. This added a random element to them as I allowed students to just to take the article and interpret themselves what they thought it was about. Or, I allowed the pairs to briefly discuss their headlines with each other to provide some background information to allow them to get started with the article - this way the articles remained a bit more 'true' to the real-life intended headline.
I think if I were to do the activity again (and I can see this working well in form time) I would do both, but separately. I'd get the pairs to discuss with each other first their headlines and then write the articles. Then, I'd get them all to write new headlines, swap, and then they come up with the story using their imaginations.

I held a feedback session where we had some volunteers read their articles out, which was very amusing based on the article headlines they were given. I then, before moving on, gave each pair a chance to read their partner's work for their article. This worked really well.

Thanks Chappers for the idea! :)

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