Kid-friendly current events and skill building.
How I Use It
TFK provides teachers with a kid-friendly way to inject current events into their curriculum, whether they have five minutes or 5 days.
One simple way is to start the day or class period reading a particular article together and discussing it as a whole class.
Another is to assign homework asking students to choose an article of interest to them and to share a summary and their personal viewpoint on the article with the class.
Students can participate in the online polls or search for pictures and videos to support other classwork, particularly in science, geography and history. The Homework Helper can be a writing resource for students all year long.
If many students are without Internet access at home and/or computer access at school is limited, it might be worth purchasing subscriptions so students can make use of the paper edition of the magazine, which, unlike the website, is available at several different reading levels.
With adequate computer access, however, the website is an excellent free resource, loaded with articles that are both high-interest and easily accessible to late elementary and middle school students.
The Time for Kids website (www.timeforkids.com) is a free and invaluable resource for encouraging students to read, think and talk about current events, both national and international.
The site is very well organized, including sections on current stories, mini-sites on topics of special interest (Election 2012 or the London Olympics, for example), pictures and video, and student polls.
The Homework Helper section includes tips on writing different types of papers, a grammar guide and links to writing tools like an online thesaurus and bibliography writing tips.
Some teacher resources on the site (quizzes and worksheets for example) are available only with a subscription, but the lion's share of the site is available to kids, teachers and families for free.