Posted March 23, 2012
Elaine Houston Skypes with Southgate
fourth graders this week and discusses the news
This week, Southgate fourth grade students
had the chance to go inside the makings of a nightly newscast
when they Skyped with Newschannel 13’s Elaine Houston.
The program, entitled Newschannel 13
Newsroom Classroom, is designed to help students understand
why and how the station chooses the news that viewers see at the
end of the day.
Southgate librarian, Jan Parmalee, prepared
the students by teaching them about the news and how stories are
constructed. During the lessons, the fourth graders used laptop
computers in the library to access the Times Union online to read
articles, have a sense of the timeliness of "breaking" news, and
During the Skype session, Houston discussed
how the station learns of news from such sources as police
scanners and text messages and videos submitted by individuals.
She then talked about how the producers determine which stories
they will broadcast and finally how it appears when viewers see it
Houston gave examples of recent news,
including a local bank robbery, Lobby Day, and presidential
primaries as examples of stories which would be airing that night.
Students had the opportunity to ask questions
at the end of the presentation, such as, 'How has your job changed
since you started as a newsperson?' and 'Is your job interesting?'
It’s tough questions like these that may lead
some of the students to pursue a career in journalism.