Take your research and turn it into a story
August 28 , 2009
Source: Scholastic Kids Press Corps
Most newspaper articles break down into two categories:
• News articles
• Feature articles
You will also find opinion pieces, like editorials and book and movie reviews, but this lesson deals strictly with news and feature articles.
Here's how you can tellthe difference between a news story and a feature story.
• News articles cover the basics of current events. They answer the questions: who, what, where, how, and when?
• Feature articles are longer and more in depth than regular news articles. They cover one subject from multiple angles and are written in a more creative, entertaining format. Although a news story can be creative andentertaining, too! Check out the examples below.
It is important to remember that both news and features demand the same level of research and reporting.
Here are some examples of news and feature articles from the Scholastic Kids Press Corps. Read them all. Then write your own articles modeled after them.
http://www.scholastic.com/browse/article.jsp?id=3752027 Out of the Classroom, Intothe Garden Straightforward news format.
http://www.scholastic.com/browse/article.jsp?id=3751701 Green House
Earth Day Special Report feature.
The Basic Story Outline
The best way to structure a newspaper article is to first write an outline.
Review your research and notes. Then jot down ideas for the following six sections. Remember, this is just a foundation upon which to buildyour story!
I. Lead sentence
Grab and hook your reader right away!
Which facts and figures will ground your story? You have to tell your readers where and when this story is happening.
III. Opening quotation
What will give the reader a sense of the people involved and what they are thinking?
IV. Main body
What is at the heart of your story?
V. Closing quotation
Findsomething that sums the article up in a few words.
VI. Conclusion (optional—the closing quote may do the job)
What is a memorable way to end your story? The end quote is a good way to sum things up. That doesn’t always work. If you are quoting more than one person with different points of view in your story, you cannot end with a quote from just one of them. Giving one of your interviewees the lastword can tilt the story in their favor.
In this age of the Internet, you can also end your story with a link to more information or even your own behind-the-scenes blog post!
Now It’s Your Turn!
STEP 1: Read an article from the ones listed above and fill in the following blanks:
What is the…?
Lead sentence: The A New York family expands their home, reduces carbon footprint
Introduction:The Ellenbogen family of Pelham Manor, New York, lives in a large stone house, with a gym, an elevator, and an indoor fountain. Sound impressive? It is, but the most amazing part of this home is the size of its carbon footprint—not its 8,000 square feet of living space. The Ellenbogen home runs on geothermal and solar energy.
A carbon footprint is a measure of the amount of carbon dioxide releasedinto the air when oil or gas is burned to create a product, drive an engine, or fuel a vehicle. Carbon dioxide harms the environment and contributes to global warming.
Opening quotation: When homeowners Rich and Maryann Ellenbogen built their dream home, they made sure it did not have a big carbon footprint. Mr. Ellenbogen designed and built an energy-efficient, cost effective “smart” home withgeothermal heating and cooling, recycled rainwater, solar panels, and energy efficient design.
Main body: Geothermal heating and cooling systems use heat from water pumped up from inside the earth. It is not a common system in the New York area. It consists of a 750 foot pipe drilled down into three wells under the house. The water pumped up from underground is at 52 degrees. To heat the...