Do you incorporate current events in your instruction? It brings a host of benefits to students, including improvement of language, vocabulary, reading comprehension, critical thinking, problem-solving, listening, and oral expression skills. Teaching with current events also supports students in becoming informed citizens who are socially conscious.
But it doesn’t just benefit students — talking about current events in the classroom can also be advantageous to teachers. Current events can cover a wide range of subjects for holistic, cross-curricular teaching, and are an engaging way to teach media literacy skills. The discussion of current events is ideal for debates, cooperative learning, authentic writing assignments, and many more purposeful activities.
Plus, teaching with real-world events provides the opportunity to teach standards while helping kids discern between fact and opinion and detect bias — skills they need now more than ever.
So, where do you find high-quality articles and resources? How do you put together lessons on current events without spending hours distilling topics from the 24/7 news cycle? The Week’s Classroom Education Program is designed to help solve these problems for secondary teachers.
The Week is an independent news source that curates multiple perspectives on the news in politics, science, government, business, and more. I’ve been a subscriber to The Week for five years, and it’s the primary way I consume news. I don’t have to keep up with everything that’s happening or watch hours of television: I rely on a weekly summary (a new edition is released each Friday) to tell me the most important things that are happening in the world.
The Week now has a Classroom Education Program, which is designed to make it easy for educators to bring the discussion of current events into the classroom by providing them with the magazine and a matching Lesson Guide.
When you subscribe to the classroom program, you have the option to pick a physical print copy of the magazine and the guide, or a digital one. The benefit of going digital is that students can view the magazine on computers or their own mobile devices.
All of The Week’s magazines have beautiful covers featuring caricature drawings that serve as commentary on today’s most pressing issues. These will, without a doubt, kick students’ analytical skills into high gear right away.
Inside, you’ll find the magazine is divided into four parts: The Main Stories, Controversy of the Week, Talking Points, and a collection of news focusing on the arts, health, business, and other subjects.
I love that the news articles are clear and concise, making it quick and easy for students to read and digest. Most are just a few short paragraphs, and at times, even just a single paragraph, so you won’t have a difficult time fitting the discussion into your daily schedule.
The news reporting is also very balanced in that the facts of the events are clearly stated, followed by the take of the editorials on the news, and then the opinions of columnists. This specific format gives students a more comprehensive view of the current event, including how various journalists interpreted the facts.
The magazine also takes time to explain controversies and highlights relevant news and facts, which makes it easier for students to generate informed opinions.
The topics aren’t all super heavy or political — The Week also features humorous stories and snippets of good news from across the U.S.
The classroom subscription includes a Lesson Guide for the teachers. Each guide is complete with questions and engagement ideas for the cover image and every article inside the magazine. A few main activities are defined within the guide, and they come with a list of vocabulary to explore, discussion starters, classroom instructions, and a follow-up activity. You can view all of the available lesson guides here.
The Week also provides educators with the Teachers’ Reference Guide. This guide contains even more detailed instructions on how high school teachers can use the magazine in the classroom and explains how each feature fits into the curriculum. You will also find a list of evergreen activities, which are activities that can be used for every issue of The Week.
The Week has a special offer for teachers: you can subscribe to The Week’s Classroom Education Program for just $1.09 per copy here.
That’s a savings of over 78% off the single copy price! The subscription includes access to both the print and digital editions of the magazine, the lesson guides, and a free teacher’s subscription.
Disclosure: The Week has provided compensation to me for helping to spread the word about their resources. I only recommend products that I truly believe in. I am a longtime paying subscriber for The Week and truly stand behind their classroom resources.