Building a meaningful, appropriate curriculum for journalism classrooms requires many considerations. What works in one classroom may not be right for another.
Because every high school journalism program is different, we have not created a prescribed sequence to follow. Instead, the curriculum is designed to work like a buffet — allowing you to build a scope and sequence of lessons that will fill your needs while accommodating your skills, technology and teaching philosophy.
However, we do recommend any journalism or media class include lessons on foundations in journalism, including the following topics (with links to JEA curriculum modules and lessons that explore these topics):
- The role of journalism in a democracy and why news matters
- The First Amendment and freedom of expression
- Legal protections for student journalists
- Media ethics
Searching for lessons
Each module’s landing page shows the estimated time to teach each lesson along with the type of lesson and any technology needs. You can also search for lessons according to the following tags:
- Common Core State Standards
- Time to teach (less than 20 minutes, 20-45 minutes, 45-60 minutes, 60-90 minutes, or more than 90 minutes)
- Type of lesson (direct instruction, pair/group work, practice/formative, tests/quizzes, projects, analysis/critique, warm-ups/bell work)
- Technology needs (no computers, some computer access, 1:1 computer access, camera/audio/smartphone)
Just enter your search term in the search bar, and lessons with those parameters will populate.
That said, we receive requests regularly for a sample syllabus or curriculum map. During the summer of 2016, curriculum leaders put together samples for advisers to consider. Each curriculum map shows how one journalism teacher uses various lessons from each module in the JEA Curriculum Initiative in their classrooms. Every high school journalism program is different, so teachers may consider exploring these samples for perspective as they customize their own specific classroom plans.
If you are using the curriculum, we would love to hear which modules and lessons you use.
We recognize that journalism classrooms must accommodate a variety of learners with myriad needs. Curriculum leaders have identified existing lessons in the curriculum that are already suitable for ELL, gifted and talented, middle school and special education populations. Click below to see a list of lessons adaptable for these learners:
1. ELL students
4. Special education students
Curriculum leaders are also working to update and modify additional lessons to make our content accessible to all students.