The Latest EMS News · 20 April 2023

Reporting the News

EMS Newscast screen

Broadcast news elective teaches the fundamentals of journalism

According to journalist Bob Schieffer, who was a moderator for “Face the Nation” and a former CBS news chief and Washington correspondent, “Journalism is a great way to do public service, to have an impact on your community.” And since our inquisitive students are always looking for ways to make the world a better place, it’s no wonder that our broadcast news elective is popular.

In this class, fifth- and sixth-grade students learn about newsroom roles (writer, reporter, anchor, editor, cameraperson), how to structure a news story, and how to identify the most important information to share on a broadcast — asking fundamental questions like who? what? when? where? why? (called the five W’s of journalism), and how? Then, the class brainstorms topics to generate ideas, with a focus on what is happening in and around the school community. Each student selects a newsroom role and dives deeper into the skills needed to perform that role for their broadcast. The students work together to schedule interviews and write questions, film an opening segment as well as subject interviews, edit footage, and compile their videos to create an EMS news broadcast.

“This project-based learning elective offers a real-world experience for students interested in broadcast news, and it allows them to explore journalism and media more deeply. Journalists use critical thinking skills to find credible subjects and pursue reliable story leads. They play an important role in informing the public of vital information and they help to provide a platform for diverse voices,” says fifth-grade teacher Cesar Rodriguez, one of the class instructors.

Students develop and hone their skills in collaboration, communication, public speaking, script writing, and video editing, and they work on innovative and creative computer programs, such as iMovie and CapCut. They also pursue answers to questions that have piqued their curiosity.

“EMS is giving students the chance to engage with their school community, investigate issues that matter, and educate their peers. Journalism is more important now than ever, and the student newscast elective with Mr. Rodriguez is inspiring the next generation,” says Jen Maxfield Ostfeld P: ’21, ’22, ’25, Emmy-award-winning reporter for NBC New York.

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Accustomed to a challenging academic environment, EMS students welcome the demands of competitive secondary schools and are often placed in advanced sections where they perform very well.


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