Saturday, February 16, 2013

Bring Me Back a Present

     When I taught middle school I had a newspaper unit for one of the grades. We looked at all the parts of a daily paper starting with the header and ending with classified ads. We looked at headlines, first sentence of a story, editorials ..absolutely everything. The assignment was to make a scrapbook with about 10 different examples from the paper. The assignment was easy but it made the kids look through a newspaper. I killed a few birds with this stone. It got the kids reading and had them look at writing for a purpose. We did the crossword as a class and generally rooted through the whole paper. For a fine finale we took a field trip through a daily paper and saw how the paper was produced from start to finish.

I think I might need some new glasses

   I hope that some people found newspapers. I know the odd one is working for a newspaper but not likely from my newspaper unit.

   When  someone would tell me they were being taken out of school for a trip, I would look them in the eye and say, "You have to bring a present back for me!" A nervous distraught look would come over their face which said, "Is this guy for real?" I would give them a few seconds to be uncomfortable. The odd one would say ,"No way." Others might say, "Well , what do you want." Usually I got them off the hook and said , "Bring me back a newspaper." A look of relief  flooded across  their face and they enthusiastically said , "Oh sure!" I told them they didn't have to actually buy a newspaper. Their would be newspapers that they could pick up.

    So when they came back with their newspaper , I would make a big deal over the paper and we would briefly go through the paper and pass it around. Later on when they were going away they would ask me if I wanted a paper. Then they would come and say , "My Dad's going to Russia. Do you want a paper?" Some time later they would proudly come in with a paper. 

   I made a lot of mileage out of this gag. Quite a pile of newspapers built up over the years. Sadly there wasn't a lot of storage space so I had to clean out the closet from time to time. When I retired I disposed of all the newspapers that were left. Many memories went with the newspapers I collected. 

    "Bring me back a present" was a lot of fun.

29 comments:

  1. Having them bring you newspapers was a fabulous idea. I bet you were a great teacher. Too bad newspapers are no longer being read like they were in the past but I guess it's good news for the trees.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I'm afraid newspapers are on the way out. they have lost their advertising and will die an economic death.

      Delete
  2. what a great way to teach kids about news, events, marketing, word games, you name it. :)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. It was fun and I hope some of them read the paper with just a little more authority.

      Delete
  3. Now that IS fun! I like that picture of you looking smilingly at a paper about... homes? :-)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Well I don't read the homes section but the crossword puzzle is in that section so that's why I used it.

      Delete
  4. I would have loved to have had a teacher like you!!!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Oh I could get pretty serious and boring too. Today's teachers try to teach everything whereby the kids actually do the stuff. It's a much better system. I couldn't master it.

      Delete
  5. From one teacher to another Red, I think that was a super idea! I'm pretty sure I would have liked working with you. :)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Your key word is with. I was dept. head and enjoyed this where I worked with teachers to set up the subj. program for the school. I also thought that women had much to offer in school programs. They usually emphasized kids more than males

      Delete
  6. We always buy a local paper when we travel, it is fun to see what is important to the folks in that part of the world. The little local weekly that is published as the "hometown" paper in rural Minnesota where my daughter and her family live is just a hoot to read sometimes.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Locals are a blast! Now when I go to Chicago to visit my daughter I buy a paper to see if there's any news about Canada. there isn't!

      Delete
  7. I'll bet the Russian paper took some deciphering.
    It is a good way of learning both ones own and a foreign language.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. The Russian paper was a real hit with the kids. The Russian script kept their interest. It was the first one I had ever seen.

      Delete
  8. What a great post Red. I was fortunate to have some wonderful teachers as a small child. We had a teacher that took us to the shore of the bay of fundy and we had a piece of paper each with a search n find on it. I had to search for a particular shell and did find it eventually. When the kids had difficulty, the teacher helped them and everyone found all the requests. Then we took our treasures back to class and let them dry and did research about each one, printed info and glued info and treasure to big board. I remember that - We all loved Miss Murphy - she made you want to be there. I really enjoyed your Newspaper strategy an there would be a lot of adults today that remember this.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. the key your teacher had was to get you to actually do things...hands on. For some little kids this is how they learn most things. If they can't do hands on they don't learn very much.

      Delete
  9. Replies
    1. It was even fun for the teacher.

      Delete
  10. That is a fun idea. I was just thinking the other day about how many newspapers have disappeared over the years. I think this digital age has done a number on them.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I think all news papers will disappear shortly. Economics will kill them. I don't know how our daily paper has lasted this long.

      Delete
  11. That was wonderful. Your got them reading and, I am sure, thinking. As a former reporter reading newspapers makes me happy.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. The cool thing was going to Calgary and the trip through the Herald.

      Delete
  12. I so love you, Red. You tell amazing stories. You have a terrific sense of humour. I loved teaching gr. 7/8, too.
    Cheers from Cottage Country!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. As you know there were days when you couldn't keep the sense of humor. It could be stressful.

      Delete
  13. I always find that I am attracted by strange newspapers from far-away places, an attraction I can now indulge via the internet and services such as Press Reader which bring me an endless supply of facsimile newspapers from around the world with no storage consequences.

    ReplyDelete
  14. When I was a boy we had something called the Weekly Reader in elementary class. Wonder if it even still exists. Perhaps it disappeared like many of our grown up newspapers are starting to do today. How sad.....

    ReplyDelete
  15. I wish I had had you for a teacher...school would have been wonderful!

    Linda
    *♥´¨) ¸.-´¸.-♥´¨) ¸.-♥¨) (¸.-´ (¸.-` ♥♥´¨
    http://coloradofarmlife.wordpress.com
    http://deltacountyhistoricalsociety.wordpress.com

    ReplyDelete
  16. What a great idea..you must have been an awesome teacher:)

    ReplyDelete
  17. Red this was brilliant thinking on your part, what an awesome way to get children involved... I think that's it, children are not being involved in education nearly as much these days and I personally believe they should be, after all it's their education!

    ReplyDelete