Social Studies Current Events

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Social Studies Current Events

An important factor in being a good citizen is following and understanding current events around the world. Therefore, you will need to complete one current event report per month. The reports must be about serious news articles that you select (i.e., no sports, entertainment, gossip, etc.). The articles must be long enough so that you can include all of the information listed below. Usually newspaper articles that include the author’s name are long enough. The articles must come from respected sources such as The Des Moines Register, Newsweek, Time,, etc. Each report must include the following information about your article:

  1. Who is the article about? (one person, several people, a group etc.)

  2. What is the article about? (event, idea, etc.)

  3. Where is the story taking place? (city, country, state, etc.)

  4. When is the story taking place?

  5. Why did you choose this story? Why is it important?

  6. My thoughts: There are several ways you can show your own critical thinking about the article. Pick ONE of the following:

  • What Next? - Predict what you think might happen next. Make sure you explain WHY you think it will happen.

  • What If? - Explain how different actions may have made the story turn out differently. If it was a tragic story, could the tragedy have been avoided? If it was a happy story, could it have turned out tragically? HOW?

  • My opinion - Do you agree with certain people in the story, do you disagree? WHY? It’s very important to give SPECIFIC reasons for your opinion.

  • Point of View - Try to explain the story from the point of view of someone involved. What would their opinion be? WHY? Again, use SPECIFIC REASONS!

This last item will not be able to be completed thoroughly by simply skimming the story. You must show a complete understanding of the story and use your critical thinking skills.

Your reports should be written in paragraph form. Also, I need to know where your article came from—either staple the article behind your report, or include the article’s title, date and name of newspaper where you found it at the top of your report.
Due dates for these current event reports are listed below. You MUST have your article by the time you come to class on these dates. Some days you may have class time to write your report, other times it will need to be completed outside of class. No article should be more than a week old on the due date.
September 25 January 29

October 30 February 25

November 20 March 25

December 18 April 22
Each report will be worth 25 points and you will be penalized for current event reports handed in late as with any other assignments. You will be expected to share your report in your small groups, and in the large group discussion on assigned dates.

Current Events Reports Criteria



Doesn’t Meet Criteria


(10 points)

Your summary of the article is thorough. You identify all the imporant people, groups of people, events, ideas, and locations and dates in the article.

Your summary of the article includes the correct main ideas, people, events, etc. but it lacks important details.

Your summary is very incomplete. You missed important people, events, ideas, etc.

Critical Thinking

(10 points)

You clearly stated why your article is important. Your “my thoughts” section was well thought out and explained. This entire section is clearly supported by facts from the article.

You stated why your article is important and included a “my thoughts” section. You may lack in supporting facts or clear explanations.

Your thinking in the why important and “my thoughts” section of the reoprt is either incomplete or not at all supported by facts from the article.


(5 points)

There are no major errors in spelling, sentence structure, paragraph structure, etc.

There are a few major errors in spelling, sentence structure, paragraph structure, etc.

There are several major errors in spelling, sentence structure, paragraph structure, etc.

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