Curriculum Guides

  • Circumnavigation

    Students learn about geography, weather and human stamina while reading about a round-the-world endurance sailboat race. Teachers may wish to review students' knowledge of geography and weather or introduce new terms by using the three reproducibles that divide the Volvo Ocean Race into segments: Southampton, England, to Auckland, New Zealand; Auckland to Baltimore, Maryland; and Baltimore/Annapolis to Kiel, Germany.

  • Sneaker Supply and Demand

    After a brief introduction to the history of shoes, students learn why their sneakers cost what they do. Word Study and "The History of the Sneaker" give glimpses of foot coverings through the centuries. Students are asked to design tomorrow's shoe and name it. "Girls Against Boys" gives them insight into market research. Two reproducibles are provided: "Sneaker Economics 101," a graph activity using data from 1995 and 2002 from Nike, and "A Shoe Is a Shoe Is a Shoe," a comparison-contrast writing assignment.

  • Weather Wise

    An introduction to the fundamentals of weather, "Weather Wise" includes how to read and record weather data -- using maps, legends, graphs, charts and lists. Activities use the Weather page of The Washington Post to teach about weather; to practice reading legends, maps and data; and to create graphs and stem and leaf plots. "Tools to Measure Atmosphere" and "Word Study: A Look at Weather Words" highlight the vocabulary of weather collection and description. Two word puzzles and a tornado activity are also included.

  • Pencil Points

    This comparison-contrast lesson begins as a consumer report on a modification of the pencil, an everyday object that has slowly changed over centuries. The KidsPost articles provide the historic background and process for the creation of a liquid graphite pencil. A chart for recording student evaluations is provided. After discussing and preparing graphs of their results, students create advertisements as persuasive posters and/or write a business letter. The Word Study takes a look at graphite.

  • On the Front Lines

    INSIDE Journalism: The Front Page takes a close look at the elements that compose the front page of The Washington Post. "How to... Read the Front Page" provides vocabulary, an annotated front page and activity sheet. "Timeline" features Washington Post history, 1877-1889. Pair it with "A Changing Community, A Changing Role," a collection of discussion questions and activities that are related to the late 1800s and the front page. Students can learn more about the Supreme Court and its fact-finding role in "You Be the Judge" activity written by a Marshall-Brennan Program fellow.

  • Control of Congress

    The 2002 election provides the faces and facts from which students can examine American citizens' involvement in the democratic process, the law-making process, and the power and influence that comes with control of Congress. "You Read It In the Post," "Strange But True," and activities provide for a study of the 2002 campaign and election results. The KidsPost articles and this guide's activities suggest different approaches to further study of the Congress as a legislative body. Also included are math problems, Web resources, vocabulary and "Word Study, " A Look at Congress."

  • INSIDE Journalism: The News Story

    Use the Post to learn the basics of writing a news story in inverted pyramid style from the lede to the cut-off test. Reproducibles for students include "The Annotated News Story," "How to... Write a News Story," "How to... Begin a News Story" and "The Inverted Pyramid." Post reporters answer student questions about their careers. The Washington Post timeline focuses on 1890-1900, a decade that witnessed the explosion of the Maine in Cuba, yellow journalism and the newsboys strike in New York City.

  • Good Picture

    The news photograph provides the focus for an examination of the ethics of digital manipulation. Students learn about The Washington Post photography staff and meet award-winning photographer Dayna Smith. Reproducibles include "How to Write a Cutline" and "Should They Manipulate Photographs?" The You and Your Rights lesson gives both artistic and ethical perspective in "The Ethics of Photo Manipulation: Does the Picture Help Tell the Story?" Cartoonist Clifford Berryman and his teddy bear are featured in the history of The Washington Post, 1901-1916.

  • Colonial Chores

    The KidsPost article, "The Good Old Days? Not Quite," and a research activity focus on the chores of children who contributed to the economic livelihood of colonial families. A vocabulary list, word find, crossword puzzle and "Word Study...A Look at Chore" are provided to develop vocabulary. Students are asked to write an essay or process paper. Enrichment activities and "Colonial Destinations" expand the study of colonial life.

  • INSIDE Journalism: The Editorial Page

    Whether you want to understand the editorial writing process at The Washington Post or for your own newspaper, "INSIDE Journalism: The Editorial Page" provides insight and how-to information. The annotated editorial page and Q and A with Robert Asher, a Post editorial writer, shed light on opinion writing at The Post. Use "How to Write an Editorial," "Building an Editorial," vocabulary and resource lists to help students write their own editorials.

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