Monday, 21 August 2017

6 Useful Resources for Exploiting the News in the English Language Classroom

Whether it's fake news, real news, world news or just news to you, navigating and understanding the news in a second language can be a really useful way to gain some valuable and authentic insights into the culture of the language.


In this article I'm sharing a collection of resources that you can use with your students to help them understand news stories in English.

News in levels
This is a really useful site that has news stories that students can read according to their level. The same story is offered at all levels and the site also includes some interactive quizzes for students so this is also useful for autonomous learning.


Listenwise
This is a great site that has lesson plans as well as listening activities for audio on a range of news related content. You have to register to get access to the teaching and learning resources.
You can also pay for a premium membership which will give you some LMS type learner tracking and class creation tools and allow you to customise, adapt and assign the content to specific students or classes. You can see some examples here: https://listenwise.com/current_events
https://listenwise.com/


Newsela
Again this is a great site with plenty of reading at a range of levels. Students also get quizzes and can write reviews and comments on the article.

Breaking News English
This site has a vast collection of lesson materials designed around current news stories. The stories have been rewritten to be accessible for lower level English language learners. As well as the stories and multiple activities that accompany each one, there are audio recordings of the stories that students can listen to. Multiple audio files are provided for each story so that students can listen to the story at slower speeds. This is a great source of classroom materials for teachers.
http://www.breakingnewsenglish.com/ 

News Literacy Project
The News Literacy Project is an innovative national educational program that mobilizes seasoned journalists to work with educators to teach students how to sort fact from fiction. Important stuff to help learners deal with real world issues.
http://www.thenewsliteracyproject.org/

Factitious
This is an interactive reading quiz site that has a collection of short news stories to help students identify 'fake news'. Students have to read them and decide which stories are genuine and which are fake. They can play through three levels of the quiz. This is great to get students reading and to make them question the authenticity of what they read. Would be very useful to lead into a discussion about how to check the authenticity of news stories.
http://factitious.augamestudio.com/


I hope you and your students enjoy these resources. You can find links to many more  sites like this and activities for the digital classroom in my ebooks at: http://peacheypublications.com/. All my ebooks are available for iOS and as PDF.


Sign up for my twice monthly free newsletter and get a free copy of Digital Tools for Teachers at: https://tinyletter.com/technogogy/ 

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Nik Peachey

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