Curriculum Guides

  • Preserve, Restore or Toss?

    Providing future generations with places that reflect their cultural values and ideals and maintaining their political, social and historic legacy requires a commitment of individuals, organizations and government. Many of the activities in this guide cross disciplines because of the social, cultural, economic and historic issues, art and architecture considerations, and science of preservation.

  • From Print to Air

    The news media has the responsibility to provide citizens with information. In what ways does providing news through print, broadcast and the Internet help citizens to be self-governing, better informed and engaged in the issues and events of their communities? In what ways is radio an important means of conveying information to individuals in countries around the world? The news peg for this guide is the establishment of WTWP radio station by The Washington Post Company and Bonneville International.

  • A World of Money

    A history of money and an introduction to bartering and counterfeiting is given in the KidsPost article. The main lesson focuses on two sentences excerpted from the KidsPost feature. Mathematics activities center on circumference and graphs. A vocabulary fill-in-the-blank activity and Word Study of "porcelain" and cowry shells focus students on vocabulary development. Web resources are given for Native American and monetary studies.

  • The Science in Discovery

    Ten years after his discovery in Italy, Otzi is back in the news. The KidsPost article, "Frozen in Time: Uncovering the 5,300-Year-Old Mysteries of the European Iceman," covers the mummy's discovery in 1991 and his cause of death revealed in July 2001 through the latest advance in x-ray technology. The lesson begins with a KWL reading activity. This task definition strategy will help students to define for themselves what they know, what they want to know and what they have learned. Discussion questions are included.

  • Media in the Time of Tragedy

    The tragic acts of terrorism of September 11, 2001, prompted the Educational Services Department of The Washington Post to provide a collection of activities, lesson plans and Web resources for teachers. We encourage teachers and publications advisers to use these unprecedented acts in the American experience to teach students how such tragedy is handled in the media. In this curriculum guide, teachers are provided three lessons. "Today's First Rough Draft of History," focuses on using the newspaper to understand terrorist attacks.

  • Muslim: Fact and Stereotype

    Stereotypes can affect individuals and influence a community as seen in the KidsPost article, "Muslim and American: Kids Worry About Anti-Arab Reaction." This curriculum guide provides discussion questions to use with the article, enrichment activities and a lesson. After reading the article, students discuss stereotypes, review basic beliefs of Muslims and engage in a group activity.

  • Insect Habitat

    Introduce your students to the world of insects, their collection, display, and identification using dichotomous keys. In the Insect Habitat curriculum guide, students will read a 1992 Post Science Notebook selection, "Entomology: Ant's Thermal Window of Opportunity," and the KidsPost article "Mister Bug: Gary Hevel Found a Wild World in His Back Yard," which focuses on one man's search for insects in his own Silver Spring, Md., back yard. Questions for discussion and close reading, Web resources and vocabulary are provided for the selections.

  • Leaves

    As students read about the changing colors of leaves in fall, they also learn about photosynthesis and the life cycle of leaves. Study questions and Web resources that provide experiments and more activities are provided to accompany the KidsPost article, "Fall Guys: Colorful Show Signals The Approach of Winter." A reproducible evaluation form can be used with the descriptive writing assignment. The Word Study looks at the etymology of photosynthesis. A reproducible gives basic information on anthocyanins, carotenoids and chlorophyll.

  • Sumatran Tiger

    After reading about the new Sumatran tiger cub and chief tiger keeper at the National Zoo, students will research rare and endangered species. "Earning His Stripes" and "Tigers in Trouble" are stimulus for further study of the five remaining subspecies of tigers and other rare and endangered animals. Teachers are provided Web and print resources, classroom activity, research assignment and a list of 130 rare and endangered animals found at the National Zoo. The Word Study focuses on "extinction." 

  • The Movie Review(er)

    "Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone" provides the timely vehicle to introduce the basics of movie review writing. An interview with Washington Post movie reviewer Desson Howe gives a glimpse into the life of a critic. It is clear that Howe has academic training and a love of movies. Movie trivia questions get students thinking about their own knowledge of movies and the economics of the motion picture industry. Teachers are provided guidelines for movie review writers, film vocabulary and a checklist for students to use when writing their first movie reviews.