JOURNALISM 101: Audio and Print 

  • Description:
    • Looking to pick up a new skill and share your interests with the world? SpringLight’s Journalism 101  will teach students the basics of print and audio reporting. Students will receive feedback on their work and gain opportunities to publish their writing and podcasts online.
    • Students will practice:
      • News writing for print and broadcast
      • Interviewing and field recording
      • Scripting and story structure
      • Audio editing and mixing
  • Times/Dates:
    • Session 1: June 10-July 2*
    • Session 2: July 8-July 30
    • Wednesdays and Fridays, 4:30-6:00pm
    • *June session time may change

Class Description

The novel coronavirus upended the way we live our lives, took family, friends and neighbors from us and highlighted racial and economic inequities. On top of this, we’ve had a national election cycle that further revealed the deep divisions within American society. 

Journalism is at the center of it all. It is at the heartbeat of our nation and the world.  Journalists report on what is going on around them and provide the context. They give readers, viewers and listeners enough information to make informed decisions. That’s the point of journalism and what you will learn and practice in this class. 

In this class, students will  learn how to write using the active voice to give your stories energy and power. You’ll learn how to identify what makes news; find, report and follow stories; and gather information to craft into stories that can appear on multiple platforms.

Ages: 13-16

Dates: 12/28-31/2020 (M-W)

Time: 1-3PM

Location: Zoom (virtual)

Class plans

Date In-Class Activities Homework for next class
Dec 28 – Day 1 Getting to know you. Introduction to class. What makes journalism.

Objectivity and Bias. What’s the difference between opinion and news or facts?

The basics of journalistic style and writing 

Watch Cupertino City Council meeting recording (feel free to watch a meeting from your city if they are available online) 

Write 300-500 word story based on the video and minutes

Dec 29 – Day 2 Active Writing and Punctuation activity 

Peer Review and workshop articles

Story structure lecture

Find a piece of journalism—preferably written but could be video, audio, etc—to share with the class. Be prepared to talk about what it does well and critique what it doesn't do well.  

Revise your articles

Dec 30 – Day 3 Interview Techniques and Mock Interviews 

Writing headlines


About the Instructor

Ms. Katherine Simpson graduated Summa Cum Laude from Gordon College with a double degree in Political Science and English literature. After serving as Editor-in-Chief of her college newspaper, she interned at multiple NPR stations and produced a story for NPR’s nationally-syndicated midday program, Here & Now. Ms. Simpson’s research and writing includes reporting on Indianapolis’ city government and a thesis on Toni Morrison. Currently she freelances for local newspapers and serves as co-host and producer for the Asian American Forward podcast. She strives to imbue a curiosity ad empathy in her students. Whether she’s teaching Government, literature, or writing, she hopes that her students will not only grow as learners but as people. In her free time, she enjoys swimming and playing the harp.