Current events teaching has never been juicier. Up to the second information on events from all points of the four winds can be easily gathered, disseminated and pored over using digital tools. Videos from within the Occupy Wall Street camp, tweets from observers and players in the Arab Spring uprising and the ability to communicate with anyone at the center of a news story via iChat means that students now have a more immediate connection to events than most journalists had fifteen years ago. And with traditional news sources sometimes struggling to compete with the constant flow of information, our students have never been in a better position to show their flair as budding journalists.
This webinar demonstrated how students can access information and turn it into a news story – making sense of multiple sources, applying a clear vision and creating news stories of their own. We discussed some of the drawbacks to the mass of unfiltered information, and how we can help our students become objective reporters and informed opinion makers.
Here are the links I shared in the webinar:
Newsmap: a visual representation of the Google News aggregator
Google News: Try customising the page using the Preference sliders
Newsvine: user voted news stories – a good place to take the temperature of the news
Newseum’s Today’s Front Pages: over 900 front pages from the world’s newspapers, update daily.
MARVEL: ProQuest News database is a fantastic resource for searching through 1400+ publications from around the world, with many publication’s articles going back at least a decade.
In addition, we looked at YouTube’s capabilities for up to the minute footage of events, and iTunes Store’s News and Politics Podcasts. Google Earth can provide background on the areas where events are taking place, and the World Data Analyst on MARVEL can help with statistics on each country.
Image by Giladlotan on Flickr. Used with a Creative Commons License CC BY-NC 2.0