How Sheffield schools can make the news as reading project returns

Eve Jackson, Phoebe Nicholson and Sophie Anstey read The Star at Mundella School. Picture by Andrew Roe
Eve Jackson, Phoebe Nicholson and Sophie Anstey read The Star at Mundella School. Picture by Andrew Roe

Hold the front page - schoolchildren in Sheffield are getting the chance to taste life as a journalist through the return of a fun scheme.

Make The News 2017 allows pupils to explore the people, places and happenings that shape the world around them, and to understand how these are interpreted in the pages of their local newspaper.

Arbourthorne Primary School pupils reading The Star. Picture by Andrew Roe

Arbourthorne Primary School pupils reading The Star. Picture by Andrew Roe

The development of reading skills is a key element of the scheme. Children have the opportunity to get to grips with an informative text other than books, discovering real-life stories about topical events covered accurately by the media.

The programme, aimed at pupils in junior departments across the city, is organised by The Star alongside Learn Sheffield and The News Foundation.

Classes will receive their own activity books together with heavily discounted copies of The Star, delivered to their school once a week for six weeks.

At the end of the project, children can create their very own newspaper front page - and they will also be presented with a personal certificate of achievement.

Another enticing incentive is on offer, too. Every class that is signed up will be allotted two free hours to spend in the Sheffield Virgin Money Lounge on Fargate - where they can bowl, play table football and use computer games - in November and December.

Last year scores of Key Stage 2 pupils took part in The Star's scheme when it was launched for the first time.

The foundation was established in 2012, and works with the media industry, schools and other organisations to run activities and campaigns that encourage people to regularly read the news. Its stated aim is to foster 'a more knowledgeable, literate and understanding future society'.

The project costs £2.25 for each participating child, and is open to all primary schools in Sheffield. It is limited to the first 30 classes to register, but there is no cap on the number of classes that can sign up from one school.

Once registered, teachers will be sent their project packs and activity books. Deliveries of The Star will start in the week of November 6, continuing on a weekly basis until December 15.

To sign up, send entry details by email to george@news-foundation.com with the subject line 'The Star, Sheffield - Make The News 2017'. Registrations must be received before October 30. Money should not be sent straight away, as invoices will be issued towards the end of the programme.