This comprehensive Current Event Unit lesson plan provides everything you need for effective practice of Common Core Standards and deeper thinking in the elementary and middle school classroom.
Common Core Standards for reading informational texts in the form of news articles, writing expository pieces (both weekly summaries of their news reports and a final comprehensive essay), and speaking and listening daily as oral presentations are given are all addressed here. Encouraging students to stick with a topic over time also encourages deeper thinking skills such as analysis and formation of critical opinions. Students will feel as if they have become experts in their fields. It is essential to narrow the focus to important current events since students become so distracted by sensational celebrity news, and they tend also to Google topics and accept any opinions at the drop of a hat. This is not a research paper so students have to stay on top of their topics. A great bonus is that this endeavor encourages meaningful discussion not only in class but at home.
This unit includes parent information letters, weekly oral presentation and write-up worksheets, complete instructions for a culminating report, a handy worksheet that forces students to pull their ideas together before writing their final essay, sample title page and table of contents formats, and grade rubrics.