In this exercise, students are assigned roles as evening news program TV announcers. Have students choose any two articles from the current issue of News for You. After reading the articles, they must summarize the most important information in three or four clear sentences. Have each student sit at a table facing the class and role-play a TV announcer delivering the "Evening News for You."
At first, students may be hesitant to be put in the spotlight. But after the second or third time, they often get caught up in the performance and become more creative.
Here are some phrases that can help them begin their newscasts:
Divide the class into pairs or small groups. Then ask each pair or group to select a photo from News for You and come up with a scene based on it, complete with dialogue. Each group will perform its scene for classmates. The rest of the students guess which photo the performers used. This works well for upper-level ESL students.
Choose two articles from News for You that can be developed into skits. Set time limits for planning and presenting the skits. Divide the class into two groups, and give each group suggested ideas for each skit. Include characters, scenes, and actions. Get class members in the audience involved in each skit by having them ask questions of the players in character after the skit presentation.
Assign each student a person from the week’s news. Each student should then become that person and prepare a monologue telling the person’s story and how he or she feels about the situation reported. Students should take turns presenting their characters. While one student is presenting, the others can play the role of journalists at a press conference by asking questions of the presenter. The presenter would be expected to answer the questions. These activities take the news off the page and give it immediacy. They allow the students to imagine a person’s life vividly rather than simply reading about it.