School Newspaper or Literary Magazine

Learn journalistic planning, interviewing, and writing techniques through the production of a quality publication that is sustainable and interesting to read. This group ELO will also enable students to understand the financial, legal, and ethical issues surrounding public publications.


  • Essential Question:  How do we create and manage a successful sustainable student publication that people actually want to read?
  • Areas of study: Journalism and/or recovery credit for English courses
  • Type and amount of credit earned: ½ credit
  • Community partner: Local newspaper reporter


  • Problem Solving – process of designing, implementing, and evaluating a strategy
  • Visual Literacy – integrate and evaluate content presented in diverse formats
  • Collaboration – cooperation among team members with defined roles
  • Public Speaking – presentation of the learning in a public forum

See the detailed ELO description for the full text of these competencies.

Student activities

  • Set a weekly meeting time.
  • Create a publication schedule and deadlines.
  • Create a shared online Google account for all members to use for communication. Use Gmail account to send alerts, share ideas, and keep all students up to speed on deadlines, etc.
  • Contact local newspaper and determine publication/collaboration possibilities and plans. Publications can vary from a one-time publication to a regular monthly publication. The key is to make sure the work appears in the public sphere outside the walls of the school.
  • Select a theme for the publication, set publication deadlines, and assign roles.
  • Collect or write the stories, images, artwork for the publication. Use visual literacy rubric and writing rubric to evaluate stories and submissions. Spend time discussing what work will fit for the specific theme of that publication.
  • Assemble/layout publication.
  • Periodically have students discuss competencies of collaboration, problem solving, and visual literacy.
  • Present publication and final presentation.


The final assessment for this ELO  will be the creation of the school newspaper/literary magazine. Along the way, during the semester, students will discuss and participate in formative assessments around collaboration, problem-solving, speaking and visual literacy. At the end of the semester students will present to a select group of adults, parents, peers and community partners during a one-time after school showcase session. Together students will show the product they created. They will each speak individually about the work they did and what they each specifically learned. Students will also need to write a reflection paper to hand in for final assessment and to read excerpts at the final presentation.

More information

This ELO was driven by ConVal Regional High School students who were searching for creative ways to earn English credit and to share their voices publicly. The ELO can help at-risk students and students with disabilities earn credit in a non-traditional and more creative environment surrounded by their peers. It also helps engage students who might otherwise resist writing and publishing activities because it is hands-on and creates a product that students feel proud to share. At ConVal we set this ELO up so it closely mimicked a working newsroom. We had two senior editors, one assistant editor, a secretary, and design editor; we also had specific individuals who were responsible for collecting poetry, art, photos, etc.

Being part of the New England Scholastic Press Association helped lend credibility to our publication and the students loved attending the NESPA conference at Boston University in May.

This ELO can be adjusted depending on the specific credit needs of an individual student.

This ELO was submitted by Amanda Bastoni, CTE Photo/Video teacher at ConVal Regional High School. Email teacher for more information