Writing a News Report On the Literacy Test... Why a news report? News reports teach students to write in a formal style without referring to themselves. Writing a news report teaches students how to organize information differently, not like in a story or opinion essay. • HOW is information organized differently in a news report? In a STORY, information is usually organized.... Chronologically, from the beginning to the end. Finish Start... to In a News Report, information is usually organized.... • to start at the END !! .... and EXPLAIN how it all BEGAN ! It is STILL a story. It tells a story but NOT in chronological order. It begins with the end of an event. THEN, it explains the background information that led to this ending. ALSO, it is organized from the most important information to the least important. It uses many short paragraphs. (4-5) It does not use “dialogue,” but instead, uses direct “quotations” from people involved. Here’s an example of a story: One day a hare saw a tortoise walking slowly along and began to laugh and mock him. The tortoise, in response, challenged the hare to a race and the hare, still laughing, accepted. They agreed on a route and started off .The hare shot ahead and ran briskly for some time. Then seeing that he was far ahead of the tortoise, he thought he'd sit under a tree for some time and relax before continuing the race. He sat under the tree and soon fell asleep. The tortoise, plodding on, overtook him and finished the race. The hare woke up and realized that he had lost. When he crossed the finish line, all of the other forest creatures laughed at him. “Slow and steady wins the race,” said the tortoise. “I want a rematch,” replied the embarrassed hare. Notice that... You have to read the whole story to find out who won the race. The story starts with the least important information: how it all started. The story uses a long paragraph and dialogue (characters talking to each other). The writer is trying to teach us a moral or lesson. A news report is organized for readers who... • • • • • want to get the news quickly only have time to read the first 1-3 paragraphs may read in more depth if they want to don’t want to be bored or intimidated by long paragraphs want the facts told objectively without the writer’s opinion. Here is the same “story” organized as a news report: In a stunning upset, a slow footed tortoise defeated a speedy hare in a cross-country marathon yesterday afternoon in Fableland Forest. A grudge match, the race began when the hare mocked the tortoise for being slow and the tortoise responded by challenging him to a test of speed. They both agreed upon a route and took off. At first, the speedy rabbit took a commanding lead while the tortoise plodded on slowly and steadily. Nearing the finish line, the hare decided to save energy by resting in the cool shade of a tree. However, the hare soon fell asleep, and the tortoise quietly crossed the finish line after several hours. Awaking dazed and confused, the hare finished the race only to find the tortoise celebrating his victory with the other forest creatures. “My strategy was simple,” said the tortoise. “I gave 100% from beginning to end and it all paid off.” Humiliated, the hare immediately challenged the tortoise to a rematch. What’s the difference? The news report BEGINS by explaining the OUTCOME of a “story,” not the beginning. It BEGINS by answering the Who? What? When? Where? of an event. It then explains the background to that event, the Why? and the How? It uses many short paragraphs (4-5 paragraphs of 2-4 sentences). It uses a factual style and expresses no opinion. Now, what kind of news report do you have to write on the literacy test? The news report begins with instructions to follow. Task: Write a news report based on the headline and picture on the next page. You will have to make up the facts and information using: Who? What? Where? When? Why? How? You must relate your newspaper report to the HEADLINE AND the PICTURE. ♦ Purpose and Audience: to report on an event for the readers of a newspaper ♦ Length: The lined space provided for your written work indicates the approximate length of the writing expected. Make it 4-5 paragraphs with 2-4 sentences in EACH ONE. Start a new paragraph for each speaker (for the quotations). You are then shown a headline and photograph to base your article upon. Students raise money for good cause What are you supposed to do? Use the Headline given to you and your imagination to come up with logical details that connect to the picture and headline. Write a news article of about 1 page in length. Answer the Who? What? When? And Where? In an opening paragraph. Explain the How? And Why? in 4-5 short body paragraphs. You get a page with the headline and picture to write your article Begin by using the space provided to brainstorm your lead paragraph that explains the who? what? when? and where? Important: always connect your ideas to the headline and picture. Who? A group of seven students What? Organized a walkathon to raise money for the Cancer Society When? March 25th Where? Sir Robert Borden High School, Ottawa, ON Now, you are ready to write your lead paragraph. Students raise money for good cause A group of seven students from Sir Robert Borden High School in Ottawa organized a walkathon to raise money for the Cancer Society on March 25th, 2012. Now, you get to use your imagination to fill in the details to round out the article by usually answering the why? and the how? Students raise money for good cause A group of seven students from Sir Robert Borden High School in Rocklnad organized a walkathon to raise money for the Cancer Society on March 25th, 2011. The students decided to raise money for the Cancer Society because it was said that many of the students’ family members were suffering from Cancer and undergoing treatment. The students decided to raise money by organizing a walkathon last Thursday. The event was very successful and raised over $5,000 in only one day. Over 600 students participated in their homeroom classes by raising pledges of at least $10 each. When the students were asked why they decided to raise money they said they felt it was their duty to do something for the community that in the end might help their own families too. Students raise money for good cause A group of seven students from Sir Robert Borden High School in Ottawa organized a walkathon to raise money for the Cancer Society on March 25th, 2011. The students decided to raise money for the Cancer Society because it was said that many of the students’ family members were suffering from Cancer and undergoing treatment. The students decided to raise money by organizing a walkathon last Thursday. The event was very successful and raised over $5,000 in only one day. Over 600 students participated in their homeroom classes by raising pledges of at least $10 each. When the students were asked why they decided to raise money they said they felt it was their duty to do something for the community that in the end might help their own families too. “These students did a great job and I hope they will do the same thing next year,” said principal Jones. In fact, the event was such a success, the student council plans to make it an annual fundraiser. Here is an example of an inadequate news report that would only receive 10 out 60 Students Raise money for good cause Students raise money for school dances and school trips. Here is one that would only score 20 out of 60. Students Raise Money for Good Cause The students of our High School raised money to help the poor. Last week we held a fundraiser selling food. All of the money the collected went to helping out the poor. They raised almost 400 dollars. You've done a very good job Ottawa students Here’s one that would only get 30 out of 60 (you need at least 40 to pass) Students raise money for good cause Students from Ottawa are doing a fund raiser to help build a new computer lab. This computer lab will have 36 new Pentium 4 computers. It will also have 4 new printers and scanners. The computers will be programmed with a fire wall and a pop-up blocker. Ottawa students have been baking cakes, cookies and pies for the past four weeks. The CCVI students have inspired other restaurants to sponsor them in their fundraiser. You have to write enough relevant information to get 40 or more out of 60 in topic development in order to pass Students Raise Money for Good Cause A group of grade 11 students from Ottawa decided to get together for a very special cause. There were 7 students who raised money for a good cause. The students decided to raise more for the heart and stroke foundation because it was said that one of the students family member was suffering from heart disease. On April 2, 2011 at SRB, the students decided to raise money by having a car wash and a bake sale. The event was very successful and they raised over $200 in only one day. They decided to donate all of the money they made to the charity of their choice. When the students were asked why they decided to raise money, the replied by saying, "we thought it was necessary for us to make a difference and give back to the community to make it a better place." They were very proud of their accomplishments and hoped that other teenagers would be inspired by what they did and help out the community themselves. Now some important “Don’ts” Don’t write a TV news Report: Example: This is Ms. Mason live at Sir Robert Borden High School where several students have been doing great things. Let’s talk with... Don’t forget to skip lines between paragraphs. Don’t write fewer than 4-5 short paragraphs Don’t use lots of quotations and risk turning it into a dialogue, not a news report. Don’t write in the present or future tense! News events took place in the past.