This lesson should be done after a unit on newspaper writing. All students in the class should have completed a newspaper article about a current event. Once the students have finished writing their articles, this lesson will help them create headlines and subheadlines for their piece of writing.
Students will be able to identify characteristics of headlines and sub-headlines. Students will be able to write their own headlines and sub-headlines for an assigned article, as well as their own article.
What is a headline? What is the purpose of a headline? What makes a good headline? What is a subheadline? What is the purpose of a subheadline? What makes a good subheadline? What is the difference between a headline and a subheadline?
- Enlarged copy of a newspaper article of your choice that has a headline and subheadline. (attached)
2. Copies of 2 newspaper articles: one that includes a headline and subheadline, and one that does not. (attached)
3. Newspaper articles that the children have completed during previous class periods.
The teacher will invite the students to the carpet. The teacher will show the students a headline on an enlarged newspaper article (attached is the one I used). The headline of the article will read “Super Stunner”. The teacher will ask the students what they think the newspaper article is going to be about based on the headline. Once the students have made a few predictions, the teacher will reveal the sub-headline. The teacher will once again ask the students to predict what the article is about now that they know the sub-headline.
The teacher will present the students with a “Writer’s Statement” that says:
Below the Writer’s Statement, the teacher will have definitions of headline and sub-headline written for the students. The teacher will also discuss with the students some of the characteristics of headlines and sub-headlines.
The teacher will then ask the students to return to their desks.
- Writers create headlines and sub-headlines to grab the reader’s attention and to give information about the article.
The teacher will give each student a packet including two articles (attached are the ones I used in my classroom).
The first article will have a headline and a sub-headline and the second article will not have a headline and a sub-headline.
The teacher will ask the students to read the article.
Once the students have read the article, the teacher will discuss the headline and sub-headline of the first article with the students.
The teacher will ask the students to brainstorm other ideas the author of the article could have used as a headline.
The teacher will do the same with the sub-headline.
Next, the teacher will split the students into pairs.
The teacher will instruct the students to read the second piece of writing (without the given headlines) and create their own headline and sub-headline for the article.
The students will then share their ideas with the class.
Here are some helpful links for the lesson:
The teacher can assess student progress throughout the partner work by looking at the students' headlines and subheadlines. The teacher will also assess their individual performance when the students will reread their own newspaper articles that they have written in class and create headlines and sub-headlines that are appropriate for their piece of writing.
Answer Key or Rubric:
Benchmark or Standards:
Standard 1: Students will read, write, listen, and speak for information and understanding.
As listeners and readers, students will collect data, facts, and ideas; discover relationships, concepts, and generalizations; and use knowledge generated from oral, written, and electronically produced texts. As speakers and writers, they will use oral and written language to acquire, interpret, apply, and transmit information.
1. Listening and reading to acquire information and understanding involves collecting data, facts, and ideas; discovering relationships, concepts, and generalizations; and using knowledge from oral, written, and electronic sources.
2. Speaking and writing to acquire and transmit information requires asking probing and clarifying questions, interpreting information in one’s own words, applying information from one context to another, and presenting the information and interpretation clearly, concisely, and comprehensibly.
Standard 3: Students will read, write, listen, and speak for critical analysis and evaluation.
As listeners and readers, students will analyze experiences, ideas, information, and issues presented by others using a variety of established criteria. As speakers and writers, they will present, in oral and written language and from a variety of perspectives, their opinions and judgments on experiences, ideas, information and issues.
1. Listening and reading to analyze and evaluate experiences, ideas, information, and issues requires using evaluative criteria from a variety of perspectives and recognizing the difference in evaluations based on different sets of criteria.
2. Speaking and writing for critical analysis and evaluation requires presenting opinions and judgments on experiences, ideas, information, and issues clearly, logically, and persuasively with reference to specific criteria on which the opinion or judgment is based.