This school workshop was written and developed for Stanground Academy in Peterborough and was so successful that it is now available to all schools. The school workshop took place on a transition day where pupils from several primary schools came to the Academy to get a taste of what big school is all about.
The transition day workshop is designed so that students can interview people from their new school and put together a feature about the school. The features can then be used in a school newsletter, on the school website or as a display in the school reception (at both primary and secondary schools).
During the first part of the school workshop students learn about how news reporters find stories, how to follow them through with research and interviews and how to write up a story accurately.
Students then pair up and interview each other about a mock story. This is an exercise in listening and note-taking as well as practicing valuable interview techniques.
They then write up the first three paragraphs of the story putting into practice everything they have learned about writing for a newspaper.
This will test the student’s ability to pick out the important information from notes - and is particularly designed to test how accurate the resulting story is!
The third part of this school workshop gets the students doing everything they have learnt for real!
At Stanground, pupils interviewed the Business Manager, a PE teacher, a music teacher, the Head of year 7, some new year 7 pupils and a year 13 sixth former. The idea was that the students would be able to describe how different life is when you move up to big school and what the school has to offer.
They were able to put their interviewing technique into practice and write some fantastic features using their knowledge and skills from the morning’s work. They loved finding out more about the school and their confidence grew as they talked to teachers and the older students.
At the end of the day students have learnt about the reality of working on a news desk and how news stories are found and reported. They have done it themselves for real and will have the satisfaction of seeing something published that they have worked on.
Students at Stanground Academy really enjoyed the transition day and the teachers were very happy as the students had learned far more about the school then they would have on a normal transition day.