An attractive layout tool for learners to make a free, professional-looking newspaper. Learners can practise writing and digital skills in a creative way and teachers can print or publish their work and put it on display.
Professional results, even with limited digital skills and resources
You and your learners can create attractive newspapers to display their writing. The design software (ARTHR) lets you upload text and images into a newspaper design, and each page is downloadable as a pdf. You can print off these pages yourself for individual articles (for free) or order copies of tabloid-sized newspapers (for a fee) from the website.
Creating an attractive final product will encourage even the least willing writers. Learners can work outside class independently, or there are many possibilities for a class project to encourage group work.
An enjoyable way to get learners writing
Using a newspaper format can encourage learners to write about issues which are important to them. This may be on a local level within their school/college or as a global citizen. You could discuss a particular topic in class to prepare learners to write a report on it; you could set up a role-play activity for learners to become ‘journalists’ and interview their classmates, and then create an article; or learners could produce a termly review of what has been happening at school/college. These are all great opportunities for learners to share their experiences and achievements, and to focus on the language they need to communicate their ideas.
Integrating skills and collaborative learning
Creating a newspaper is the perfect way to integrate skills. Learners can work together in pairs or small groups to prepare the content. This means they’ll need to decide what to write, so they’ll speak and listen for a real communicative purpose. They’ll also need to read what they’ve written to decide what to write next. This integrates all four skills in a natural, enjoyable context.
The teacher can put the finished newspapers on display for other learners to read, so there is an audience for their work. There could be a competition with the best work staying on display in the classroom or on the school’s website.