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Scholastic Journalism Week : Schedule of Events

Monday: Media Day The foundation for the week and what student publications do. Spend some time looking at the history of journalism. Give students a list of journalists through history, have a WikiRace to see who can find information about them and their impact on journalism today. If you have more time, have students complete a poster assignment about Journalism History (there’s a great assignment in CJET 2010, contributed by Carolyn A. Brown, CJE, adviser, Tiger Times, Seoul International School, Seoul, Korea). Have a conversation with your staff about the purpose of journalism throughout history and now, talk about the role of scholastic journalism in the community, attend a school board meeting to highlight the importance of journalism at all levels. Give the students the assignment of researching the history of your publication. How long has it been around? Has the name changed?

Tuesday: Take it to the Community Day A day to promote yourself and what your publication/staff does. Conduct a readership survey if you are a newspaper in print or online , have a booth set up at the lunch tables to promote your program and recruit, wear shirts promoting your program, One cool idea might be to assign each of your staffers to take a portrait of themselves that displays their personality. Take the portraits and get inexpensive frames for them from a dollar store and then display them in a trophy case at your school with the SJW poster.

Wednesday: WE CAN! What does journalism mean to you? Have each of the staffers sit in a circle and talk about what being a student journalist means or has meant to them. Spend time goal setting as a publication, what can you be, what can you do? Take the TAO of Journalism pledge during Scholastic Journalism Week this year. Last year more than 1,000 student journalists took the pledge to be Transparent, Accountable and Open in their practice of journalism, and they now carry the TAO of Journalism Seal on their work. TAO of Journalism is endorsed by JEA.

Thursday: Thank you! Take some time to thank those that have helped your publication. Send out thank-you cards to advertisers, your publishing company, your administration, the teaching staff. One idea might be to hold a “Meet the Press” event for a half hour to an hour after school. Buy cake (everyone loves cake!), send out invitations to the teaching staff and administration, and have your entire publication staff in attendance. It gives your sources a chance to put faces to the publication for when they are approached for interviews in the future.

Friday: Free Speech Friday Stay tuned for ideas and information from the Student Partners (45words) and Scholastic Press Rights Commission.

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