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Teaching journalism

Discussion in 'Journalism topics only' started by ChollyTrippi, Aug 4, 2006.

  1. ChollyTrippi

    ChollyTrippi New Member

    After nearly a decade as a sports writer, I recently took a job teaching high school journalism. Classes start in less than two weeks. The school paper is a joke, but there's a lot of potential and a lot of cause for excitement on my part. I know some of you have taught in the past and was seeking any advice you might offer. Thanks.
  2. Overrated

    Overrated Guest

    Flirt with any and all chicks in your class. Offer to give them rides home after a long, steamy night of production. Offer them cigarettes. If they smoke, they poke.
  3. Overrated

    Overrated Guest

    But seriously, work out your lesson plan to a T. Teach them about real-world journalism, instead of the bullshit textbooks and classes teach. Tell them stories about what you went through, good and bad. Know exactly what you are talking about. If they sense weakness or ignorance, you're fucking dead. Be cool, but not too cool. Be a dick, but not too big of a dick.
  4. Cadet

    Cadet Guest

    Make friends with the secretaries and the janitors. They hold keys to everything in the school, literally and figuratively.
  5. slappy4428

    slappy4428 Active Member

    Be careful of sloe-eyed sabras
  6. Ace

    Ace Well-Known Member

  7. SF_Express

    SF_Express Active Member

    I've always thought that if I was going to teach a class, I'd tell them that they were going to pass my class as long as they tried hard and -- never missed a deadline. I'd make that the one absolute, that aside from serious illness or whatever, the one absolute requirement I had was that they turn in assignments on time.
  8. Marvin

    Marvin Active Member

    You might want to check out the book "No Time Outs: What It's Really Like to Be a Sportswriter."

    As also suggested on this board, "Pond Scum and Vultures."
  9. txsportsscribe

    txsportsscribe Active Member

    easier said than done when there's a set curriculum.

    best of luck but also be prepared for 75 percent of your students taking the class because they think it's a blowoff while the other 25 percent do all the work. i've taught at the high school level and as a graduate teaching fellow in a college undergrad reporting lab. ran as fast as i could from the high school job but would go the college route again in a heart beat.

    also get ready to be caught under an avalanche of paperwork, especially for any special needs students.
  10. buckweaver

    buckweaver Active Member

    That's a good one. Drill that one in their heads early.

    Also, get them interested in all the different production aspects of the newspaper. By this I mean, get them to realize that writing is not the only (or coolest) job in journalism. You don't have to be a writer to make a living or have an enjoyable career in journalism. (Hell, we got enough hacks as it is.)

    Threadjack alert: If they do decide to stick with journalism, it will make them better-quality newsroom employees if they're not narrowly confined to knowing only what their own department does. There's nothing I hate worse than deskers who don't have any tolerance for photogs, or SEs who don't understand the concept of production, and the utter lack of understanding and communication between different departments in a newsroom.

    Finally, I'd suggest calling up an editor or press supervisor at the local paper, and inquiring about taking a field trip (at a CONVENIENT time for the journos, please. No disturbing the worker bees.) Get them involved (or at least interested in) the local paper because a) it helps the paper; 2) it gets you/them involved in the community; III) showing is always more fun than telling.
  11. MGoBlue

    MGoBlue Member

    I hope to teach journalism once I get this second pension secured.
  12. leo1

    leo1 Active Member

    this might be true but i'd suggest the teacher keep an eye out for that kid who maybe doesn't pipe up because it's high school and he's not in the popular crowd but who might be someone you can steer into a career in journalism. i'd think if you had an impact on even one kid it would be a worthwhile experience.
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