Classroom Activities

Activity # 5
Compare T.V. News Broadcasts  Broadcast

Note: We recommend that you print this page for offline reference.

Here is a great activity to introduce your students to media issues

Videotape the first ten minutes of a television news broadcasts from two or more local stations or from the CTV and CBC national broadcasts.

Let the students watch them in class and ask them to compare what each newscast did differently.

Here are some questions to consider in the class discussion, depending on the age of your students and their level of media awareness

  • Make a List
    Ask a couple of students to make a list of the stories that appeared in each newscast on the worksheet provided below. Do you see the same stories on each list? Are there major differences?

  • Order of Stories
    Ask them to look at the order in which stories were read, keeping in mind that more important stories are usually read first. What did each station feature as its top story? Was it the same?

  • Length of Stories
    How long did the stories run? Ask one of your students to time the stories with a stop-watch or the classroom clock. Did some stories last for 25 seconds while others ran for three minutes? Ask your students to discuss why they think some stories get more air time than others.

  • Type of Story. Ask them to look at the stories that were featured on the newscast. Is there one type of story that comes up more often than others? Crime, politics, business, human interest stories? Ask your students what they think of these choices? Are they interested in the stories? Would they rather see stories about other subjects?

  • Type of People featured in stories
    Ask your students to keep track of the type of people who are featured in news stories. Are they mostly politicians, officials, celebrities, and other well-known people? Do regular citizens make it into the news very often? If they do, how and when do they appear? What about women? People of various ethnic backgrounds? Disabled people?

  • Act as Producer
    Encourage your students to act as the producer of a newscast. How would they organize the newscast? What's their top story? What would they cut out? Is there a story they would add?




 Order Newscast 1- story and length

 Newscast 2 - story and length


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