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Grade level: 68
Imagine you are a young reporter covering the national
news of the 1920s and '30s. You've just been assigned
to a breaking story about a female pilot, Amelia Earhart.
It's your job to tell readers nationwide everything
they need to know.
Choose any event in Earhart's life from her first
record-breaking flight of 1922 to her final flight
around the world. Depending on which event you choose,
Earhart may be an outspoken college student, a relatively
unknown pilot, or a national celebrity. As you're
writing your news account, think about how this particular
event influenced or was affected by other events of
Develop your story as a newspaper article or a radio
broadcast. (Radio became an important part of American
life in the 1920s.) Before you start writing, it may
help to check out some examples of how the news is
covered. You could
Although every source reports the news differently,
you will usually find there are basic elements common
to all valid news stories. For example, every story
should answer the critical five W's and an H about the
event: Who? What? When? Where? Why? How?
- listen to a news story on the radio;
- read your local or national paper;
- check out articles from a newspaper Web site, such
as The Washington Post
or USA Today.
To write your news story:
- Read the Life and Times time line to learn about
Amelia Earhart and the major events taking place in
the United States during her lifetime.
- Choose one newsworthy event in Earhart's life that
interests you. Be sure to record all the specific
information you can find about the event for example,
the exact date and time, place, and circumstances.
- Think about historical events and social changes
taking place in the United States during Earhart's
life. How do you think people then would have reacted
to the event? You may want to consult the interview with
Sylvia Barter, a woman who became a pilot during this
period in history. Or ask a grandparent or neighbor
who remembers Earhart's accomplishments. How would
people today react differently to the same event?
- Using your notes, write a short news article or radio
announcement about the event in Earhart's life. Remember,
the information in your account should be historically
accurate and objective. However, you may wish to include
fictional quotes or interviews to show how Americans
reacted to Amelia Earhart's actions.
- From March 17April 30, 1997, Scholastic conducted a "News Story" contest. Students from all over the U.S. submitted news stories. Read the news accounts from our contest winners. How are
they similar to yours? How are they different?