Sierra Tyson (left) interviews Madison Geiger (right) in preparation for Thursday’s Valley News edition. Grain Valley Schools Summer SOAR program’s journalism classes worked with Valley News staff on this edition, writing community profiles, creating editorial cartoons, and developing a story about their class.
Photo credit: Valley News staff
Fourth and fifth grade students attending the Summer SOAR program at Stony Point Elementary and Prairie Branch Elementary have spent the past month mastering their interviewing and writing skills. The Junior Journalists classes worked on researching, reporting, and producing daily and weekly stories on events happening during summer school.
Valley News visited with both classes during a session at Prairie Branch Elementary on June 26th, and students worked together on contributions for this article, editorial cartoons, and community profiles in this week’s edition.
Summer SOAR instructors Kaitlyn Pavlica, a fourth grade teacher at Stony Point Elementary, and Theresa Huff, 6th grade English Language Arts teacher, North Middle School, worked with students to learn how to interview, research, write, and publish articles for publication. Students also took photographs, designed and published their publications using Google applications such as Google Docs, Google Slides, and Google Sites.
“We also took our notebooks and interviewed people from different classes. We took pictures and did all of the writing,” Hayden Lucas said.
Beyond school news, students researched and wrote on a variety of topics.
“We researched and put together a folder on the Great Barrier Reef,” Jameson Dillinger said.
During the June 26th work session with Valley News, students talked about the importance of the press, how to properly interview and document facts, and how to separate news from editorial or opinion writing.
Students expressed how challenging it can be to come up with good questions and to conduct interviews.
“The most challenging part of being a journalist is interviewing someone we don’t know. That was hard. We got better by the end of the class, though,” Brett Bieri said.
Students interviewed each other as a part of their session with Valley News. Below are selections from interviews conducted by Junior Journalist students.
Editorial cartoons created by Junior Journalist students.