Presentation on theme: "A introductory course in news writing"— Presentation transcript:
1A introductory course in news writing The News StoryA introductory course in news writingThis mini-writing course is intended for students in middle and senior high school English and Journalism courses.This lesson was created by Jonathan Klingeman
2Welcome!Journalism is a skill and practice that takes years to master; however, everyone must start at the beginning. For this mini-course, that is exactly where we will begin!This course will teach you the basic building bocks of news writing that includes writing leads and story structures.
3NavigationSelect this button at any time to move back to the previous slide.Select this button at any time to move back to the main menu.Select this button at any time to move forward to the next slide.
4Main Menu Writing Leads Story Structures Practice Quiz Lesson Lesson 2Writing LeadsStory StructuresLesson Lesson 4PracticeQuiz
5Lesson 1Writing Leads“Whether you're a newspaper journalist, a lawyer, a doctor. You have to organize your thoughts.” --Frederick Wiseman
6Your Story, Your LeadsFirst, you must identify the main point of your story before you write it!A good journalist always asks “So what?” or “What’s this about?” or “What’s my point?” when considering gathered informationThe lead is what opens any piece of journalism. Other than the headline, the lead is the only chance to “catch” your reader’s attention!”
7Writing Your LeadReaders spend only 3 seconds deciding whether to read your story based on your lead!There are many types of leads; however, we will work with the most popular: a direct news lead. This consists of 1 or 2 sentences in the opening paragraph that contains the most important parts of the storyThis consists of 1 or 2 sentences in the opening paragraph that contains some of the most important parts of the story (who, what, where, when, why, how)
8LeadsThe following 2 examples are direct news leads that accurately tell the reader the most important information about the story!Local police captured two juvenile thieves Wednesday after the robbery of Rob’s Mini-Mart.The Student Council has made plans to donate 100% of all its proceeds from Friday night’s social event. The group plans to split the money between two local charities.
9Lead Wrap UpDon’t be afraid to toy with leads until you create the best one!If you are having trouble, create as many different lead combinations in a short time. The pressure will help you to organize the most important elements!This concludes lesson 1 on writing leads. Please select the home button to continue the course!
10Lesson 2 Story Structures “A newspaper should be the maximum of information, and the minimum of comment.” --Richard Cobden
11Organizing Your StoryNow with a strong lead, the time has come to develop the rest of your story that includes the most interesting facts!Choosing the correct structure to benefit your readers is critical to the success of your story!There are 3 typical structures you will be using as a journalist:Inverted PyramidStorytelling PatternChronological Order PatternAlso, you might use these patterns together in the same story!
12Inverted PyramidLEADMost interesting news stories use this style for many reasons; it benefits:Hurried readersBeginning journalistsHeadline writersPage layout editorsMost Important DetailsLess important detailsLeast important detailsThis style is beneficial to many different people because less time will be spent on the parts of the story that aren’t as important!
13Storytelling Pattern Lead This narrative form captures a reader’s interest without being as obvious as the inverted pyramid.After a beginning, middle, and end, the writer includes a clincher or a kicker which gives the reader something to remember without repeating previous information; a circle kicker returns back to the opening paragraph!FactClincherFact
14Chronological Pattern LeadThough similar to the narrative style, this pattern works very well when a writer is trying to convey critical points of a story!ForeshadowingChronological StorytellingClimax at End
15Story Structure Wrap Up Obviously the type of story structure you choose is based a great deal on the content.Keep your readers in mind when organizing your information, drafting your story, and finally revising!This concludes lesson 2 on story structures. Please select the home button to continue the course!
16Practice Using LeadsRead the following lead and think about which news writing tools are used!*STATE COLLEGE--- The State College Area school board’s $102 million plan to reconfigure State High could be expected to cost more or less by early next month.Why?Who?What?How?Where?When?Pauling, Dena. "Project Costs Revised." Centre Daily Times 26 Sept , sec. A: 1+.
17Practice Using LeadsNow, use the following tools to create your own lead.Who: The Senior Class Executive CommitteeWhat: FundraiserWhere: South Bend Senior High SchoolWhen: October 2006-December 2006Why: To raise money for a local children’s charityHow: By collecting donations from all grade levels during homeroomWhy?Who?What?How?Where?When?
18Practice Using LeadsWhat did you come up with?? Share your results with a friend orTeacher! Below are possible suggested leads:Students at South Bend recently began taking monetary collections during the second marking period for children in need at the local shelter.Or2. Beginning in October, The Senior Executive Committee at South Bend will be raising funds for the local children by collecting donations in homerooms.This concludes the practice on how to write leads. Please select the home button to continue the course!Why?Who?What?How?Where?When?
19QuizWhen you are comfortable, click start quiz to begin the examination! You will be tested on the first 2 lessons! Good luck!Start Quiz
20A good journalist always asks ALL of the following questions except: “So what do they expect me to do?”“What’s my point?”“So What?”“What’s this about?”BD
21Question 2 The average reader spends how long reading a lead when deciding whether to continue reading?AC1 minute30 seconds0 seconds3 secondsBD
22What is at the top of the “inverted pyramid” structure? Question 3What is at the top of the “inverted pyramid” structure?ACLeast important detailsLeadsCircle KickersMost important detailsBD
23Try Again! That was a good try, but no. A good journalist should always ask “so what” in order to find out why a reader/viewer will want to pay attention!Try Again
24Try Again! That was a good try, but no. A good journalist should always ask “what’s this about” in order to find out who this story will be affecting and why people should pay attention to it!Try Again
25Try Again! That was a good try, but no. A good journalist should always ask “what’s my point” so that readers/viewers won’t be confused about your main idea!Try Again
26Very Good! That is correct! A good journalist wouldn’t ever ask “what do they want me to do?” As journalists, we should always be looking how to help society!Question 2
27Try Again! That was a good try, but no. Most readers use a lead when deciding whether to continue.Try Again
28Try Again! That was a good try, but no. That’s a little too long; in fact, most people can read most of an article in that time!Try Again
29Try Again! That was a good try, but no. Most readers will have read an entire article in 1 minute.Try Again
30Very Good! That is correct! A reader only spends about 3 seconds when deciding to continue reading or move to a new story! Make sure your lead is fun, yet meaningful!Question 3
31Try Again! That was a good try, but no. The most important details are close to the lead, but support the lead rather than build up the information.Try Again
32Try Again! That was a good try, but no. The least important details should be the fewest and near the bottom!Try Again
33Try Again! That was a good try, but no. Circle kickers are part of their own story structures that end back at the lead living the reader with a memorable thought!Try Again
34Very Good! That is correct! The lead is the first and largest part of the inverted pyramid structure followed by the most important details, the less important details, least important details, and etc.
35Congratulations!You’ve done a fantastic job at learning how to use leads and choosing a story structure. Best of luck in the future and keep building your journalism knowledge.If you would like to get some more information about high school journalism, click here to be sent to a great resource!Click the “home” button to return to the “welcome screen.”