January 23, 2010

News You Can Use

I have no idea how I end up on so many crazy email lists (I'm careful to always give my junk email when asked), but my spam box is constantly inundated with messages. The spam box for my work email is typically from local universities reminding me to register for their graduate programs or advertisements to buy classroom resources from workshops I've attended. A couple weeks ago, though, I was intrigued by an email from Tween Tribune and stopped by the website for a little inspection.

What I found was a fantastic resource that pulls relevant, high-interest stories from reliable websites (The Associated Press, CNN, AOL, local newspapers and television stations) into one location for tweens to read and comment. Best of all, all comments are moderated, ensuring a safe environment.

While this site is intended for classroom use, I would certainly recommend its use in the home as well. I think it's extremely important that our children are aware of what's happening in the world, but I know most 8-14 year olds aren't signing on to msnbc to weed through the hundreds of articles for something they a) understand and b) care about. I think this site is the perfect way to get children interested in the news! They will especially enjoy the comment section where they can share their thoughts and read what others think about the weekly news.

I've already used this website in my classroom as an aide in teaching my students how to write extended responses and even debates. It's a great way to encourage high-order thinking and backing up opinions with evidence from the text.

Check it out... share it with your tween!

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