Student newspaper of Strath Haven High School

Panther Press

Student newspaper of Strath Haven High School

Panther Press

Student newspaper of Strath Haven High School

Panther Press

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Yearbook and Panther Press staff members attend National High School Journalism Convention in Boston

In-depth workshops, convention sessions, and team experiences were highlights for Strath Haven students
Convention+attendees+pose+for+a+group+photo+during+the+Boston+pizza+tour.
Staff
Convention attendees pose for a group photo during the Boston pizza tour.

Sixteen student members of the Strath Haven High School newspaper and yearbook staffs traveled to the National High School Journalism Convention (NHSJC) in Boston, Mass. from Nov. 1-5. Accompanied by advisers Mrs. Beth Cohen and Ms. Kate Plows, Haven students participated in three jam-packed days of learning, competition, and team building,

The fall convention is one of two annual conventions sponsored by the Journalism Education Association and the National Scholastic Press Association. With more than 4,400 student journalists and advisers in attendance, NHSJC is the nation’s largest gathering of high school journalists, advisers and journalism teachers.

On Saturday, Nov. 12, journalism adviser Ms. Kate Plows presented a conference session titled “From Extracurricular to Extraordinary,” focusing on strategies to support club journalism programs.

Yearbook staff members received valuable feedback on the 2023 yearbook and Panther Press staffers learned from a JEA expert during  30-minute individual critiques. Students were able to network with colleges, journalism organizations, and other students from around the country at the exhibit hall and during convention sessions.

“What made the convention valuable was the mix of the experiences you had with your peers,” junior Panther Press editor Matteo Ventresca said. “Like, going out and experiencing things, or hanging out in someone’s room until room check, and having all that fun throughout the day… and then there was actually going to the sessions and learning things that are going to help you in the long run as a student journalist.”

All students participated in individual National Student Media Contests (NSMC), competing in photography, newspaper writing, and yearbook copy. As extracurricular participants in a convention mostly attended by curricular journalism students, the Strath Haven students participated in contests mostly to collect the individualized feedback offered by judges rather than in anticipation of awards.

Plows, who helped to judge the Boston National Student Media Contest in editorial writing, noted that these contests were very competitive. “There are no participation awards in the NSMC contests,” she said. “The quality of the student work in the contests that I judged was outstanding, and the competition for recognition was fierce.”

Still, the Strath Haven team came home from Boston with some national rankings. In all, 1,453 students competed in photo, broadcast, graphic design, literary magazine, design and writing contests, according to the JEA press release. There were 601 students recognized with 92 superior, 183 excellent and 326 honorable mention awards. Full rankings for the contests are linked. All students receive detailed feedback from two or more judges who reviewed their work.

  • Lorelei Karn ’27 / Superior, First Year Photo (only two superiors in this category)
  • Joe Lynch ’24 / Superior, Yearbook Copy/Caption, Clubs (only superior in this category)
  • Michelle Ding ’24 / Superior, Yearbook Copy/Caption, Student Life (only superior in this category)
  • Kaitlyn Ho ’26 / Excellent, Feature Writing
  • Evie Fernandez ’27 / Honorable Mention, Review Writing
  • Luci DiBonaventura ’25 / Honorable Mention, Editorial Cartooning
  • Sasha Binder ’24 / Honorable Mention, Commentary Writing
  • Lucy Karn ’24 / Honorable Mention, Press Law & Ethics
  • Josie Wieland ’26 / Honorable Mention, Literary Magazine Illustration

Additionally, The Panther Press was awarded tenth place in Best of Show for high schools with an enrollment of fewer than 1,800. Tenth place is a remarkable accomplishment for a club newspaper. For all but two of the other programs in the NSPA top ten list, student journalism is a curricular option. For the two that are extracurricular, the programs are credited co-curricular programs, similar to Strath Haven’s fifth block with credit (i.e. marching band).

Students agreed that the convention was an intense structured learning experience, as well as a chance to learn informally from so many others who were excited about student journalism.

“We had three whole days of full-on learning,” junior Panther Press and Haven Yearbook editor Evelynn Lin said. “You had the chance to learn from so many experts and advisers from these well-known newspaper and yearbook programs, and then you also got to talk with other student journalists.”

According to Lin, the connections with other schools and programs were valuable.

“I got to bond with so many other people, and learn what they’re doing well with their publications,” she said. “It was just a lot of excitement that got me really hype for when I got back, to focus on what we want to keep working on for our staffs.”


As of the publication of this post, fifteen of our sixteen participants have shared some of their learning from the NHSJC experience in the blog posts below.

Social Media Strategies | Marilyn Ashley '25

Spotlight on Journalism in Boston, Massachusetts was an event that was full of learning experiences.

My first session on Thursday, November 2 was called Online and Social Media Bootcamp. It was an all-day session from 8:30-5:00 led by Sarah Lerner, the journalism adviser at Marjorie Stoneman Douglas High School. Ms. Lerner was a great speaker who I was able to connect with. She was very intelligent and was very easy to talk to. She even gave me feedback on some of my ideas after the session.

One of my main takeaways was the fact that you have to connect with your audience online and get to know them. To grab someone's attention your content has to be worthy of their attention, meaning it has to interest them too. Sometimes not all of the social media content has to be related to the yearbook. It is important to offer up fun experiences with the yearbook so that the viewers can feel included in what is happening.

This session gave me so many ideas on how to advance and gain traction within the student body. Teenagers are often difficult to entertain, especially about a yearbook that only publishes a product once a year. Lerner gave lots of tips on how to stay connected and interesting even during the time when the yearbook doesn't have content to do. She gave ideas like previews, polls, and infographics put onto social media so that the student body keeps interest and doesn't forget that the yearbook is still there working in the background.

Visiting Boston | Marilyn Ashley '25

Boston is a very interesting city. I was really excited to go on this trip because I wanted to develop better journalism skills but I also love seeing new places. Since I'm a junior I have to start thinking about college. After this trip I'm highly considering coming to Boston for school.

Boston is a very fun place. Most of the buildings and streets are full of old brick, cute artichture. As a group we also visited old Boston for a pizza tour. There was so much history and stories behind every street. It was all very welcoming. 

While I was there I also went to a session about college life in Boston. I was able to hear from a panel of students from many different colleges in boston. They gave too much insight on how to get into some of the schools I'm interested in as well as their favorite parts about each school. This entire trip seemed to open up so many doors in my mind. Not only is Boston a great city but it holds a lot of potential for me and my future. 

Being able to go on this trip with some of my closest friends was a great experience for me. I had so much fun making new friends with some of the underclassmen as well as random highschool students that I met from across the country. 

even though i wasn't able to win any awards. I feel like even getting the opportunity to do things like this is an award. I'm going to be receiving feedback and ways to improve on doing the things that I love.

Learning to Lead | Sasha Binder '24

Before arriving in Boston I made a list of the things I needed to work on as a leader, and how I could target them throughout the conference.

The biggest goal I had and still have is organization as a leader.

With this goal in mind I loaded my schedule with sessions relating to leadership in order to gain the knowledge I did not have prior.

The session that, upon further reflection, impacted me the most was “10 Habits of a Highly Effective Editor” led by Julieanne McClain. 

What I gained from this session is the idea of balance. Being a confident leader while also respecting the friendships made with members of the staff. McClain managed to teach me all about this in under 30 minutes. Her approach was to promote friendship and leadership balance and give student leaders ways to guide without establishing a fearful relationship between staffers and the EIC, a concern I had and still have even now. 

What I found most valuable is how realistic she was when giving advice and informing the room of over 50 student leaders. She gave examples and shared that although it's good to have goals, not all of them are manageable.

When discussing student and staff dynamics she told us how to address conflicts politely in ways that don’t damage friendships, while also giving us advice on how to appear as a capable leader and feel comfortable guiding younger students and those seen as friends.

I have always struggled with allowing myself to lead and I feel as though McClain’s session gave me the tools or at least showed me what tools I need to acquire in order to be the leader I want to be. 

Now that I know what I need to do, I can go about implementing the many useful tips I received. 

Communicating and Collaborating | Sasha Binder '24

Being around other journalists, specifically student leaders, was my favorite part of my Boston experience. 

There’s nothing like being in a room of over 1,000 high school reporters… Especially when those reporters are just like you, eager to learn and excited to be a part of such an amazing event. 

I for one have never been to a convention before. Sure, I’ve attended competitions and events for dance but none where the atmosphere was completely positive. The energy in every room at the convention center was nothing short of a positive and loving environment. 

Each and every student was just excited to be there, just like I was. Not only were they happy to be part of something unique and special, but they were eager to share their perspectives and receive input from other journalists such as myself.

I found it incredibly motivating to hear from others, especially other EICS about how they manage their staff and how they approach specific situations. I must have taken 15 pages of notes based only on conversations I had with other teen journalists.

I remember a peer collaboration exercise we did during Leadership 101, and when I think back to that day, I smile. The exercise had nothing to do with journalism except that it forced us to communicate with fellow leaders and ask questions that would help us to grow as writers and reporters. 

The exercise was charades and in case you were wondering, my group was a camera.

In some ways, hearing from those like myself was even more valuable than hearing from seasoned professionals in the reporting world.

While I deeply enjoyed hearing from the panelists and from the speakers I signed up to hear from, there is something so unique and special about communicating with peers and those who face the same challenges you do.

I loved meeting new people and making connections with journalists and that will forever be the most memorable part of my week.

Freedom of the Press | Luci DiBonaventura '25

My overall experience with this trip was great and I was able to take away a lot of valuable information from my sessions. 

In my session of Law and Ethics, I was able to learn the importance of the rules and laws surrounding newspaper publications. This was definitely my favorite session and I would definitely recommend it because it highlights a part of newspaper publications people may not often think about. In this session, we went over major cases like the Tinker vs. Des Moines case with the armband and many others like a case where a school newspaper covered the issue of pregnant teenagers. It was neat learning about the different cases and how most of them ended up going all the way up to a Supreme Court level and how it still affects publications to this day.

Another cool aspect of this session was I was able to tour the Boston Globe and meet the people who worked there. This gave me great insight on journalists' lives and motivation to keep pursuing journalism. freedom of the Press: The First Amendment of the United States Constitution protects the freedom of the press, ensuring that journalists have the right to publish and report without government censorship. This principle is essential for investigative reporting and holding those in power accountable.

Some important takeaways from this session were:

  1. Defamation Laws: Journalists have to be careful so they don’t make false statements about individuals or organizations, as they can be held liable for defamation. This area of law emphasizes the importance of accuracy and responsible reporting.
  2. Privacy and Intrusion: Journalists must navigate a fine line between reporting the truth and invading someone's privacy. Laws vary, but generally, individuals have a right to privacy, and journalists should respect these boundaries.
  3. Shield Laws: Some jurisdictions have shield laws that protect journalists from being compelled to reveal their sources in court. These laws are crucial for maintaining the confidentiality of whistleblowers and informants.
  4. Intellectual Property: Journalists should be mindful of copyright and intellectual property laws when using images, videos, or written content created by others. Fair use and proper attribution are essential.
Design Tips | Luci DiBonaventura '25

Most of the sessions I went to were all new information but when it comes to design and layout I’m a deer in the headlights. I wanted to explore a completely new area, that being design, and see what I could learn from it. The session was really cool and entertaining. I found this session to be one of the most helpful in improving my skills in that area. There was a lot more than I really thought about when it came to design and layout. 

Some of the important notes I took from this session were the layout where newspapers often follow a grid-based layout, where articles, images, and advertisements are organized into columns and rows. A well-structured grid helps maintain consistency and readability. It allows for easy navigation, making it simple for readers to find the content they're interested in. Headlines are the first things readers notice. They should be bold, concise, and attention-grabbing. Fonts also play a crucial role in conveying the newspaper's tone. Serif fonts are traditionally associated with a more formal and authoritative feel, while sans-serif fonts can provide a modern and clean appearance. 

Another important aspect are images and graphics to supplement and enhance stories. Eye-catching visuals draw readers into the content. Careful selection and placement of images can convey the essence of a story at a glance. Captions help provide context and add depth to the visual elements. The depth and hue of the color can add a lot of emotion to the article as well. White space, or the areas without text or images, is as important as the content itself. It provides breathing room, prevents visual clutter, and enhances readability. Well-designed white space can make a newspaper look more elegant and approachable. Readers should easily understand the importance and sequence of stories. Elements like headlines, subheadings, pull-quotes, and page numbers help create a clear hierarchy. The most important news should be prominently displayed on the front page.

Overall the trip was a lot of fun and I also went to many other sessions like how to write movie reviews or how to write about big issues from climate change. I would definitely recommend this trip and it’s not only a great learning experience but also a great travel experience.

5 Lighting Patterns for Portrait Photography | Michelle Ding '24

5 Lighting Patterns for Portrait Photography 

See demonstration images

1) Short Loop

  • Commonly used because it tends to be universally flattering and bring some definition and dimension to the face without being too dramatic
  • “Creates symmetry of light on the mask of the face”
  • The main light source is placed on the side of the face furthest from the camera known as the short side
  • The light is roughly 6 inches above the subject’s height
  • The light source is usually softer or diffused
  • Catch lights should be at the 2 or 10 o’clock positions
  • A small shadow/loop should be created on the opposite side of the nose and on the neck under the chin
  • The mask should appear evenly lit across from the camera view

2) Butterfly/Beauty

  • Often used when shooting beauty magazines or music videos
  • The shadows on both sides of the face create a thinning effect which many prefer
  • Emphasizes facial features and tends to be universally flattering
  • Broaden area with features but smooths out texture
  • May be preferred because it most similarly compares to the reflection people seen in the mirror with lights overhead and a reflective counter below
  • Main light source is directly in front of the camera, centered to the mask of the face, and 8-12 inches above the face
  • Catch lights around 12 o’clock
  • Often, a reflector is placed beneath the subjects face
  • A butterfly-shaped shadow should appear below the nose

3) Split

  • Extremely dramatic, splits the subject’s face perpendicularly into half-shadow and half-light
  • Not usually used for normal portrait photography, more often used for specific effects
  • High contrast
  • Light should be placed on the short side of the mask of the face at a 90-degree angle
  • Height is even with the mask of the face
  • This lighting adds texture!!! This is not recommended if blemishes are a subject’s concern.
  • Catch lights should still appear in both eyes
  • The face should be evenly, perpendicularly split with half dark and half light

4) Stage (Horror)

  • The vibe is very dramatic and kind of spooky
  • Named because of the historic use of candles to light up a stage during a show/play
  • Can appear sinister if the lighting is harsh or direct, also partially due to the fact that stage lighting from below rarely happens naturally
  • Can also be a campfire feel
  • The light source should be directly in front and below the mask of the face
  • Light should be centered
  • Catch lights are at 6 o’clock
  • Creates cross lighting which adds texture

6) Rembrandt

  • A little more dramatic than butterfly or short loop, but still fairly natural
  • Inspired by the artist Rembrandt’s paintings
  • Creates contrast without being too stark
  • Light is placed at 90 degrees to the short side of mask
  • Height is 2 feet above eye level
  • Angled downward toward mask of face
  • Catchlights should appear, but their positioning may vary
  • Tell-tale sign: a small inverted triangle of lightness appears below the eye on the side of the face not exposed to light
Caption Culture | Michelle Ding '24

The “ABC’s” of a Good Caption

A} Describe the visible action of the photo in present tense

  • This should be your first sentence
  • Do not make any assumptions about the photo, describe only what can be clearly seen
    • Nothing about how someone “felt” or “thought,” if it can’t be immediately seen in the photo, it should not be in this sentence
    • Begins to answer the questions of “who, what, when, wear how”
    • A good example: “Beneath the fluorescent stage lights, Junior Jane Smith dons a cape and crown as she rehearses for her part as the Queen of Hearts on Tuesday, October 29th.”
  • No “is” or “is + gerund,” use only action verbs in present tense
    • The photo is forever frozen in time, a present tense verb is used to reflect this

B) Provide basic information that readers need and may see

  • This should be part of your second sentence, in past tense
  • Your second sentence should be the background information or context a reader needs to understand a photo
    • This is especially important if the action in the photo is not immediately clear
    • ie. if the photo shows Tate Gorman with his hand aflame, you may want to explain that he is participating in a chemistry lab and not committing arson
  • An easy way to get this information is through your interview!
    • Ask your subject what is happening in the photo, then paraphrase what they tell you or use what you learned to explain the photo
    • This sentence shouldn’t, however, be a true quote

C) Provide complimentary info not visible in the photo

  • This should still be part of your second sentence, in past tense
  • This description has to be accurate and not assumed, but not necessarily visible in the photo
    • Answer the remaining questions of “who, what, when, where, how” that the first sentence didn’t cover
    • Also consider asking about things such as weather which may impact the photo but aren’t always visible
  • Remember to write to the future for the sake of historical record, what may seem self explanatory now will probably not be as easy to remember in future years

D) Descriptive quote

  • This should be your third sentence
  • Cite your quote with “subject’s last name + said.”
    • If necessary, punctuation goes inside of the quotation mark
  • The information should come from an interview!
    • Yes, this does mean you need to talk to your subjects and prepare relevant questions to ask about the photo you are choosing or the event you covered
    • Always try to interview in person, people are much more expressive and authentic when you ask them directly
    • Also, consider using a quote from another relevant perspective not seen in the photo, such as a friend of the subject with knowledge relevant to the the photo that can’t be immediately seen

E) Extra Tips and Tricks

  • In an interview, be direct but also excited
    • You are not too cool for this interview, and neither are they
    • This will make your subjects much more willing to talk to you, and often, it’s when they give you unprompted information that you can find the most authentic quotes
    • In-person interviews build a culture of professionalism and community and can be used to uplift voices that aren’t seen as much
  • Make the caption worthwhile
    • If the story/picture is not worth showing, do not use it 
    • Even if you think something should be used, it may not necessarily be big enough or well-covered enough to use
  • Avoid beginning with a student’s name or grade
  • Prepositions are a helpful way to start captions and add an extra descriptive layer
  • Try to reduce the amount of brackets [] used, lift as much from direct quotation as possible
    • This also means taking advantage of paraphrasing in the second sentence
    • Don’t be afraid to use “he said he, she said she, or they said they.” Although it may not sound stylistically correct, this is perfectly normal journalism speak
    • Compound attributions are ok
  • Never use “poses, takes a moment to, or seems to”
    • These are cop out verbs, not true action verbs
    • Posed pictures aren’t interesting and shouldn’t be used UNLESS it is the only coverage we have of someone
    • Be literal, describe only what you see
    • Also, take out wordless words such as “really, very, many” and etc
  • If the photo is good
    • This means no discriminating against someone’s backstory, age/grade, or allowance of personal grudges
    • If they have good quotes, story, and pictures, you use the photo and caption it
    • COVERAGE IS KING - prioritize good coverage
    • “The ‘j’ in journalism does not stand for judgment.”
Friday Learning | Evie Fernandez '27

That was crazy. That’s all I can think. Boston was an incredible experience, and I learned so many new things, and I’m so excited to share them.

 Friday was our first day of sessions. First things first I went to a session called “Review A Movie, Review the World,” where I was introduced to the basics of reviewing movies, as well as learning how to apply the essentials of review writing– such as restaurants, books, and video games. It taught me how to write a good review, which came in handy for my review writing contest that night, where I had to review a short film.

Second on Friday, I went to the “AI Experience,” where a journalism teacher and her publication’s editors spoke about how she used ChatGPT specifically in her teaching, as well as in their publication’s articles. She also showed us how ChatGPT worked by plugging different prompts into it and seeing how it does, and talking about how well it performed when asked to create a headline, captions, and even photos to accompany an article. She told us that it was best at creating interview questions for you to ask, which you could then build upon/rework. 

Lastly, on Friday, I went to a session titled “Cover Breaking News Free of Breakdowns,” led by the same journalism teacher as “The AI Experience.” She spoke about how her publication started writing breaking news stories, how they became more respected in their community, and how they managed to get breaking news stories out as fast as possible. She gave us important questions to consider when writing breaking news stories, including ‘What questions do we need to answer,’ and ‘is there a next-day story?,' as well as giving us good advice involving social media presence, and how to speak about breaking news on social media.

That night, I competed in Review Writing. We sat and watched a short film about two friends who discovered and bought a cache of old letterpress film advertisements. Afterward, we were given time to ask the director questions about his creative process, his passion, and his inspiration, and then we just had to write. I ended up winning an honorable mention for my review, which was an incredible experience–as well as the conference as a whole.

Saturday Learning | Evie Fernandez '27

On Saturday, I started out with a session on covering sexual assault on your school grounds/campus. It was quite interesting to see how the man speaking was talking about it, and all in all I think he did a great job. He talked about the legal actions that could be taken against you, and how to avoid them, as well as bringing up the fact that no school district has ever been successfully sued for covering sexual assault/harassment. He also spoke about our right to certain public records that could help us in finding information for articles, which was incredibly useful.

Second on Saturday, I went to a session called “Home at Last: How Music Informs Your Writing.” It was all about how you can use poetic and lyrical devices in your writing, and how it can improve because of it. It also talked about the different types of memory, and how they’re harnessed through feelings and appealing to the senses– something that’s obviously easier to do with music than writing, but it is possible. The speaker also advised reading your writing aloud, because it reveals the flow in your writing (or that there isn’t enough of one).

My next session on Saturday was on how to cover climate change. The speaker was incredible, and she shared tons of advice and information on how to answer questions about climate change, how it’s developing, and how to use the basic terms pertaining to it. She also shared some easier-to-understand ways to talk about it– such as a metaphor about retirement. If we start saving for retirement young, we’re more likely to have more money in the end, right? Just like climate change. If we start cutting down on emissions now, we’ll have a better, faster result than if we did it later.

My last session on Saturday was about how to cover banned books, and it was one of my favorite sessions I went to while in Boston. I write book reviews for the Panther Press, so I considered it a topic that would be especially helpful for me coming back home. I thought that the speaker was very well-spoken, and he knew what he was talking about– banned book legislation and all. He spoke about the ‘chill effect’ a lot, and how it was helping people ban books more easily. He also brought up the fact that Illinois is officially the first state to ban book-banning legislation and make it punishable by law to ban books.

Leadership Training | Bailey Hansen '24

On November 2, 2023 I went to a leadership training session. Within the leadership session, we talked about a number of things including: feedback, mission statements, and different kinds of leadership. 

Firstly, in discussion of feedback, I learned the different ways in which feedback is given. There are four types of people that all give feedback differently. These people are on a scale of caring to not caring, and direct to indirect. The first type of feedback is when the person cares but is not direct. These types of people typically care but don’t clearly express the feedback needed for anyone to improve. The second feedback is direct but doesn’t really demonstrate any care or consideration of the person receiving the feedback. What this means is that, these people will tell you if there's a problem, but won’t tell you specific details to fix or improve upon the conditions of the issue. The third type of feedback, doesn’t care and is indirect. I learned in the session that this type of person is what is typically seen in high school-level clubs or teams. This type of feedback typically comes in the form of gossip. I learned that this not only doesn’t help anyone improve but can also be harmful to many people. However, the speakers also highlighted a positive form of feedback that is when a person is direct and caring. This typically brings in a third factor of private vs. public: meaning people should be considerate of the time and place feedback should be given. 

Next, I learned about the importance of having a mission statement. I learned that having a mission statement can focus and guide the group/team through future goals. I also learned that the mission statement should include goals outside of the final product, meaning that personal and social well-being should be mentioned. 

Lastly, I learned about four different kinds of leadership. These different leadership types were labeled by color. The first being orange. These are the ADHD people who love to move and have multiple things going on at once. I learned that orange people are really good at getting small tasks done, but struggle with large planned out schedules or directions. The second group is green. Green people are the big picture people, they like to get one thing done at a time, only focusing on that thing. The third group is blue. Blue people are emotional care bears. They are very empathetic and struggle to directly approach someone with an issue or concern. This can typically mean that they have a hard time making a distinction between boss and friend. Lastly, there is gold. Gold people are the organized, neat freaks who provide structure for the team. 

I would say that I’m appreciative of these lessons because I learned how to better manage the team and found a new kind of bonding experience.

Without the Press | Bailey Hansen '24

During the first night, I heard one of the speakers say, “Without the press, we wouldn’t have a democracy.” I heard this and immediately went into shock. 

I have always thought of the press as rude and invasive because that is what most celebrities are saying. However, after hearing that line, I thought for a brief moment. Then, I realized. What have I been watching and reading for my political philosophy class; the news. How do I know if something big is happening in our country; the news. I was shocked. 

I was shocked not only because of my former beliefs but also because no one had ever stated so bluntly America’s need for the press. In that moment, I gained an immense amount of respect for journalists and all of the work that they have put into advocating for the unnoticed. 

I, unfortunately, can’t say that I want to be a journalist out of this experience, however, I can say that I learned something. I learned about leadership. I learned about teamwork. I learned about communication. However, out of all of those things, I would say that the most important thing I gained from my field trip to Boston was an appreciation for people who have been publicized by countless celebrities to be invasive and rude. I learned that journalists who report on important issues have the same rights as average citizens such as myself. Meaning that the press tag is primarily just for show. 

Lastly, I found it most important to learn about something in a way that I had never heard before. It is because of this rephrasing that I came to appreciate more people. I also learned about the immense and challenging process that most journalists go through in order to write a single article. The speakers had mentioned that some of these articles took over six months to write. 

Ask the [Stupid] Questions | Kaitlyn Ho '26

This was my first time away from home / my family for more than one night. It was hard to sleep the night before, because I was turning over everything I had packed in my mind. The very worst feeling is the one where you reach for something that isn’t there, so I stayed up late trying to finish my math assignment and making sure I had everything.

I suppose I learned to not overpack on this trip—my bags were far heavier than I was. But to awkwardly transition this, I learned not to overflow on information as well while in Boston. 

There was a constant flurry of activity. Every day, you were learning something new, going somewhere new. The information filled your brain, and there was no way I could keep it all without writing it down.

Before this trip, the best advice I could give someone was to bring a notepad or a laptop for notes. I went from a class in using music in journalism to how to tackle climate change writing, and I hadn’t even left that meeting room between the two of them. Learning how to write notes quickly and efficiently about topics I had little to no prior experience on was an experience I’ll treasure for a long time. 

But I discovered some advice that I think is a bit more helpful, at least for me. Ask stupid questions. I noticed towards the last days of the workshop, people would just get up and leave once the speaker called for questions. Stay. Ask the questions you have, even if you think they suck (though ideally, they don’t and you’re just overthinking it). The speakers are always happy to answer, and I found that a lot of them gave incredible answers. 

One of my favorite workshops was one where I asked a question. The session was about how one environmental reporter had covered electric cars’ real impact, and whether or not they were actually better than gas-powered cars. I asked him how he interviewed people, while taking notes, while noting their body language, while coming up with a new question--when you’re interviewing, there’s so much going on, so how did he prioritize?

He said, “I don’t take notes.”

For real?

“That’s what the recording device is for.” (Do keep in mind he was primarily a broadcast reporter, so it’s a bit different for him, but still applicable advice.) “I try not to think of it as an interview. In an interview, there’s no give and take. It’s a conversation. People will be more open to talking to you if you frame it as a conversation.”

Mind. Blown.

Because he was so right. I have more fun having conversations than just asking questions from a list. When you interview someone, you create a connection with them. The more they trust you, the stronger the connection is.

Finding an Angle | Kaitlyn Ho '26

I had been to PSPA before, which is a regional journalism contest, for both feature writing and editorial. I thought that this competition, which I was doing feature writing for, would be around the same thing; you get a prompt, basically just quotes and facts related to the story, and you weave that miscellaneous information together to create *ta da* a piece.

Walking into the feature writing competition room, looking at the hungry (food-hungry and competition-hungry) student journalists who had pens poised, I was suddenly struck with the realization: this would not be the relaxed PSPA writing session I’d hoped it would be.

First, we had to take notes ourselves. We did get reading material—but it was just profile information on our speaker. 

Hot tip: if you’re going to do a writing part of the competition, do feature writing. Our speaker was actually so cool, and even if this wasn’t a competition, I would have still listened to her every word. 

She was an environmental and girls’ education activist from Pakistan who was studying at Harvard as a Fulbright Scholar. She talked statistics, life story, initiatives, impact, shiny nuggets of pure writing gold for desperate children such as ourselves. 

Here was the big question. What angle would I go for? 

For someone who had lived a life like that, you would think you could write about anything, but in reality, it was much more restrictive than that. How could you be creative? 

It seemed obvious what to write about. The speaker was inspired by the story of one twelve-year-old girl who had to work as a maid instead of going to school. Tragic, uplifting, everything you could want. And when I asked another journalist after the competition what angle she had gone for, she had said that she was writing about that twelve-year-old girl.

I was going to go for that, but I hesitated. I mean, everyone would be on that. The judges had to be tired of it by the time they got to my story. 

What did I think was interesting? What had she talked about with passion, but was still in the shadows enough that it was worth shedding light on?

I chose family. She had talked about her older brothers, how her family hadn’t expected much from her because she was younger, and a girl. She’d had to place high expectations on herself because no one was doing it for her. No one asked her to continue to achieve and achieve—but she did it anyway. She held herself accountable. And she came back home, having proved to her parents that she was capable of pursuing activism. They finally accepted her activism, and turned into a source of support for her.

That’s a story. 

Convention Notes | Charlotte Horetsky '24
An Abundance of Adventures | Charlotte Horetsky '24

Can you smell the action of the photo? Outlast your subject. If there is fire (especially in the science lab), you will take photos. Find a crying football player (in other words, capture human emotion and reaction).

Those were only a few of the suggestions provided by the photo contest judges during the on-screen critique.

I am grateful that I had the opportunity to go to Boston for the National High School Journalism Convention (NHSJC). The knowledge that I gained and the fun that I had was worth the exhaustion of an extremely busy schedule.

An abundance of adventures and ideas accompanied each day-- most evenings, the events of the morning cast the illusion that they had occurred days prior.

On Wednesday, November 1, as our train approached Back Bay station, the group prepared to disembark. However, before Evelynn could step onto the platform, the doors closed and the train pulled away-- leaving eleven students and Mrs. Cohen to travel to the next station. Fortunately, with the help of a transit police officer, we were permitted to board another train, which took us back to the correct station.

The following day, Michelle and I attended the Redesign Seminar and learned about publication design components-- in addition to figuring out how to use Adobe Indesign. Furthermore, dinner and browsing at the Trident bookstore, the cappella group and keynote speakers from The Boston Globe’s Spotlight team, gelato, and debrief were all memorable parts of the day.

On Friday, I began the day by walking around the exhibit hall at eight. The hall had just opened-- and it had tables for practically everything-- from yearbook publishers to college journalism programs.

Following the exhibit hall, the first day of sessions commenced. I attended A Curious Study: an Environmental Reporter Buys an EV, The AI Experiment, Grand Theft Yearbook, and Covering the Climate Crisis. All four of the sessions presented an alternative perspective on their respective topics, which I found fascinating. For instance, the presenter for the AI session suggested using AI to draft interview questions or to find errors in a spreadsheet.

Besides the sessions and newspaper, yearbook, and photography contest critiques, one of the most memorable activities of the trip was the evening spent participating in “Mandatory Fun.” I played sentence by sentence with Kaitlyn and Chat GPT, as well as Uno and Heads Up with several others.

The sessions that I attended on Saturday were Copyright: Not For Elephants or AI, Student Life and Senior Superlatives, From Extracurricular to Extraordinary, 24 for ‘24, Let’s Play the Yes or No Game, and Covering Banned Books. In the session 24 for ‘24, I found it interesting that, in the presenter’s yearbook, the staff calculated the distance swimmers swam and mapped it-- one student swam from the school cafeteria to the movie theater. This idea in particular stands out to me because it creates an opportunity to provide unique context and perspective to an event that otherwise would not be covered in the same way.

Moreover, I enjoyed the historical aspects of the Saturday pizza tour, such as the Spite House and Paul Revere house, as well as the opportunity to take photos both during the tour and of our group waiting-- especially as we waited for pizza at a playground.

In conclusion, I am glad that I made the decision to go to Boston for the NHSJC and I hope that the staff of the publications continue to have opportunities to attend journalism events in the future.

Sports Writing Notes | Lorelei Karn '27
“Boxes that Capture Light” | Lorelei Karn '27

Photography Workshop

DSLR, Mirrorless Digital, Smartphone

Stops - the basic measurements of all photography

  • Also called EV or exposure value
  • The half in value or double
  • ISO, shutter, Aperture
  • Eg. make your photo brighter = +1 stop

ISO - Sensitivity to light

  • Lower level = less sensitivity
  • Higher level = more sensitivity
  • Noise and film grain are proportional to ISO rating
  • Used based on light conditions where you shoot

Aperture - the size of the opening of your lens that lets light through

  • Measured in f stop
  • Eg. f/1.4 = small depth of field
  • 1.4, 2, 2.8, 4, 5.6, 8, 11, 16, 22 - how many people in focus

Shutter speed - amount of time the light is allowed to enter a camera

  • Shutter speed (Pt 2)
  • Faster speeds catch action

Depth of Field - amount of field that is acceptably in focus

Exposure - how light or dark an image is

Lens - optical element usually glass allows light to be focused on a sensor or film plane

  • Count “walls”
  • Allows for magnification depending on focal length

Histogram - a graph showing the distribution of tonality in an image

  • Useful for determining proper exposure
  • Only look at white

Raw vs. JPG

  • Raw files are uncompressed, the most original data
  • JPG = compressed ⅓ data

White Balance - the setting that your camera uses to assume the color temp of light in an image

  • Affects the overall color of your photo
  • Measured in degrees kelvin
  • Eg. Balance blue (shade) and orange (warm light)

Exposure - ISO + aperture + shutter speed = zero

  • ISO
    • 100 = bright and sunny
    • 200 = bright with clouds; darker subjects
    • 400 = open shade (subject in shade but can see blue skies)
    • 800 = inside
    • 1600 = indoor and dimly lit / sports (1/500 minimum for sports)
  • Shutter Speed
    • 30 second - slow recording; ghosts and streaks
    • 1/8000 - fast recording; freezing of action

Environmental Portrait - person in their place doing their thing with their stuff

Sports

  • Having designated spots and keep camera ready
  • Build good relationships to coaches; be persistent
  • Take photos that tell stories, not just action photos
  • Bring wide (50mm) camera and get very close - You don’t need a fancy camera
  • Get the celebration or thought

Optimal Sports Positions

  • Baseball/softball - Behind the plate, literally against the fence, Best with 2 people
  • Swimming - Breaths and turns
  • Track - Wide angle lenses; straight away and finish
  • Golf - Get many; not always action
  • Wrestling - “be close enough to smell it,” across the mat, 70mm, sit down
  • ALL ABOUT RELATIONSHIPS

Sports Methods

  • Go to practice before match and ask permission
  • Make their practice YOUR practice; go to dress rehearsal
  • Ask permission vs ask forgiveness
  • Be friends with Principal’s secretary and the janitor/custodian!!
  • Please and Thank You are KEY!

AI

  • Credibility is Key, no editing with AI
  • Photojournalism doesn’t allow ANY edits (ie. removing stuff)

Lighting

  • 5 in 1 reflector, dull light (30 inch)
  • Assistant with white board/cardboard 

Portraits

  • Look for shadows and catch lights
  • Soft light = soft shadows
  • Lighting not always on subject, rig to bounce off of a white or cream wall

 

Session Notes, Law of the Student Press | Lucy Karn '24

Censorship and First Amendment

-The principal does not have complete authority

  • Direct Censorship → You can't write this
  • Indirect Censorship → cutting the budget or no more conferences

- Student editing does not equal censorship

Role of Free Press

  • “Marketplace of ideas”
  • Watchdog
  • Conscience of society

- Private vs. Public

- Public → FA limits censorship

- Private → FA does not, not government agencies,

→ schools and states could have rules

-Public enemy → FA issue

- Private enemy → jerk

Public School - does not own publication and limited censorship

Private School- legally own the publication

 

Tinker vs. Des Moines

  • Wear black armbands to protest war
  • Suspended from school
    • Speech
      • Invades the rights of others
      • Creates material and substantial disruption of school activities
    • Unprotected Speech
      • Defamation (libel, slander)
      • Invasion of Privacy
      • Copyright infringement
      • Student speech that advocates illegal drug use
      • Obscenity
      • “Fighting words” 
      • “True Threats”
      • Incitement to imminent lawless action
      • Serious, physical disruption generally required
      • A reasonable forecast of disruption is required

Hazelwood vs. Kuhlmeier (1988)

  • Teen pregnancy and divorced parents
  • Reasons why it was censored
    • Reasonably related to legitimate pedagogical (educational concerns)
    • Poorly written
    • Biased or prejudice
    • Immature audience
    • ungrammatical

Tinker 

  • (Non-school-sponsored speech)
  • (independent student expression)

Hazelwood

  • (school-sponsored speech)
  • (Curricular, school-sponsored speech)

Hazelwood still limits censorship

  • School sponsored speech
  • Public forums

Other Cases

Mahanoy Area School District vs. B. L. (2021)

  • Not on school grounds or with school property
  • The school does not have the long-reaching arm to censor articles they don't like out of school

Dean vs. Utica Community Schools (2004)

  • Exhaust from school buses floats to suburban areas and homes
  • “Poorly researched article” “ This would make the school look bad” 
  • Judge said “indefensible “ censorship under Hazelwood

Limited public forum

  • Type of administrative control
  • Policy statements
  • Schools' censorship practice with respect to the forum
  • curricular/ extracurricular nature of student media

Why Unreasonable

  • Fairness, Balance, and opportunity, to respond
  • Grammar
  • Writing quality
  • Suitability to potential audience 
  • Research quality
  • Accurate
  • No bias or prejudice
  • Timing
  • Community experience

State laws and local policies can nullify Hazelwood

 

New Voices Laws 

  • (17 states) → (Statutory protection)
  • Liability protection for school
  • Job protection for advisers
  • Censorship protection for students
    • High schools
    • Colleges
    • Sometimes private schools
    • The court of public opinion

Libel Law

(Written defamation of character)

Definition: publication of a false statement of fact That seriously harms someone’s reputation.

  • publication 
  • Identification
  • Harm to reputation
  • Falsity
  • Fault

Libel —> printed (permanent)

Slander —> spoken (more fleeting)

  • articles
  • Headlines
  • Photo captions
  • In-house
  • Advertisements
  • Promotional material
  • Cartoon
  • Letters to the editor
  • Senior wills and epitaphs
  • Quotes
  • Guest columns
  • Editorials
  • Classified ads

* You are responsible for everything you publish even if someone else said it.

* You can identify a person by description (Group of less than 25)

* Use the statement of fact to defend against libel

Pure- Opinion

Mixed- Opinion and statement of fact

* No magic words will save you from libel, anything that can be proven true or false in statement form is at risk for libel. 

Red Flag Statements

  • Accusations of illegal conduct, involvement with criminal justice
  • Charges of sexual misconduct
  • Statements that attack a person’s honesty or integrity
  • Negative statements about grades and academic ability
  • Statements of racial, religious, or ethnic bigotry
  • Questions of financial stability, economic status, and creditworthiness
  • Effect on a person’s ability to do business, trade, or profession

Fault

  • Doing something a reasonable journalist would do and not something an unreasonable journalist would do. (N.Y. Times vs. Sullivan)(1964)
  • Someone is a public figure, not just affected, journalist needs to be proven to act reasonably
  • (Acting reasonably)
    • Evaluate your sources
    • Do not overstate sources' credibility
    • Accurate notes
    • Documents, documents, documents (paper trial)
    • Being rigorous in the choice of language
    • Talk to all sides-including the subject
    • Report- don’t sell
    • Be open-minded
    • Do the work or don't do the story
    • Effective and proven editing policy
    • Never publish a story if you doubt its truth
    • Respond to all complaints in a timely and courteous fashion
    • Seek legal help when necessary

Copyright for journalists

Punishment/ why you should care

  • Fined
  • Jail
  • You have your own rights to your product

Intellectual Property

  • Patent
  • Trademark
  • Copyright → your life and 7 years after
  • Trade secret

General Rule 

  • Must get permission

Requirements for Copyright

  • Originality (new)
  • Minimal Creativity (White vs. Yellow Pages)
  • Fixation (Fixed in any tangible medium of expression)
  • Expression (No protection for thoughts and ideas with nothing further)

Things that cannot be Copyrighted

  • Ideas
  • Facts
  • Procedures
  • Concepts 
  • Short phrases
  • Titles (but these may be protected under trademark law)
  • Ingredients
  • slogans

Federal words are not protected by copyright

Things that can be copyrighted

  • Photos
  • Stories
  • Illustrations
  • Cartoons
  • Advertisements
  • Sound recordings
  • Works of art 
  • Musical compositions
  • Computer programs

Copyright exists from the moment a work is created

One simple rule: In the U.S. as of 2022, work published before 1924 is in the public domain

  • Works created on or after January 1, 1978, have copyright protection for the author's life plus 70 years.

Implies license → Giving copyright license to newsroom and paper

How to get permission for a copyright work request

  • Contact information
  • Expected date of publication
  • Number of copies
  • Publication price (if any)
  • Non-profit newspaper (student media card)
  • Respond deadline

* Creative Commons → free photos

Social Media

  • Federal entity
  • Creative commons
  • Fair use (limited amount for educational standards)(Four factors of Fair use)
  • Purpose of the use 
    • Noncommercial
    • Transforms the work’s purpose
  • Nature of the copyrighted work
    • Mostly factual material, maps
  • Amount of the original work used
    • No more of the work than what is necessary may be used fairly
    • Quantitative (how many words of a 200,000-word book are reproduced)
    • Qualitative (using the core of a work- less likely to be fair use)
  • Effects on the market for the original work
    • Would consumers be willing to buy the new use as a substitute for the original work

Copyright and Parody

  • Parody must be obvious
  • Creativity counts
  • Minimal impact on original work

FOI and ACCESS

FOI

  • Open records laws
  • How to request records
  • Private school loopholes

(Only public agencies or bodies are subject to FOI laws)

  • Some private bodies perform public functions and may be covered by FOI
  • Alternate “public” sources for info about private bodies
  • Open Records
    • State open records laws
    • Federal FOI
  • Open meetings
    • State open meetings laws
    • Federal government in the Sunshine Act
  • Pocket FOI laws

Open Records Laws

  • A public body must make a record available upon request
    • A written request for records

Federal FOI Laws

  • Records created, possessed, or controlled by a federal agency or maintained by an entity under a government contract
  • Does not apply to:
    • Congress
    • Federal courts
    • Private corporations

FOI has its limitations

  • Agencies aren't required to
    • Conduct research
    • Create a record that does not already exist
    • Add explanatory materials to any records disclosed
    • Analyze data

How to request records

  • Verbal requests are sometimes recognized by law
  • Submit written requests where required or establish “paper trail”
    • Reasonably describe the record you are seeking
    • (splc.org/lettergenerator)

The official must either:

  • Provide the records in a timely manner or 
  • Point to an exemption

Your request has been improperly denied

  • Contact the record keeper and politely cite the law
  • An administrative appeal is sometimes available
  • Judicial review
  • Fines and/or attorney fees may be available

Common Exemptions

  • Records involving or ongoing criminal investigation
  • Information that would jeopardize national security
  • Police techniques
  • Some personnel records in hiring, firing, and disciplinary
  • Educational records in school

FERPA

  • Penalizes schools that release a student’s “education records” without student consent
  • Students/parents must be able to access “education records” (general trends)

Open Meetings Law

(A public body must provide notice of all gatherings)

(Everyone is allowed unless specified closed meetings)

  • Show up
  • Understand and be prepared to explain the law
  • If you are asked to leave (ask that the minutes reflect you being asked to leave)

Common uses of “Right to Know Law”

  • Graduation rates
  • Athletics
  • Accredited reports

 

Session Notes | Lucy Karn '24

How to Empower Journalism Through Ad Sales

1. Make Media Kit

  • Online and print spots
  • Team photos
  • Client testimonials

1.5. Contact

  • Newspaper name, logo, school, advertising contact info
  • Their business name, contact person, phone number, email signature
  • Size, dates, options

2. Packages

  • Amount of ads
  • The time period of ads
  • Size of ads

3. Be creative with the placements you can offer

  • Email newsletter
  • Newsracks
  • Posters across the school?

4. Show off your analytics! Numbers Matter

  • Avg. Monthly Views
  • Subscribers
  • Followers
  • Copies distributed
  • # of students

5. Communicate to your staff what the advertising money could go to.

6. Business manager position

7. Personal and Family contact

8. Organize business visiting days

9. Be professional and proof-read

10. Bring Contracts in person, so they can sign on the spot

11. Thanks to the business and share what the money was used for

How Music Can Inform Your Writing

  • Vowels and consonants give effect to music and writing
  • 25% of listeners think of their own memories and life
    • Procedural- a habit or routine (unconscious)
    • Episodic- shopping list (Conscious)
  • Legato- flow/tied together
  • Staccato- separate/cut apart

Verbs create strong writing

Repetition

  • Alliteration
  • Repetend: anywhere in the poem
  • Anaphora: Repetition of words at the beginning of a line
  •  Epistrophe: repetition of words at the end of a line

Music sticks in certain people’s brains for long times because they become assorted with memories (write like that and people will remember your articles/writing for a while)

So You Got Canceled … Now What?

Her Control

  • Not investigating further
  • Submitting a final draft even though there were holes in the story

Editor’s Control 

  • Not pulling story
  • Giving a first year a 10+ interviewee story on a 3-week timeline

Key Tips

  1. Only say what you KNOW is actually true and what you can prove
  2. Acknowledge when certain stories are past your limits
  3. Get support from editors and be a supportive editor
  4. Always finish the story, no investigating is better than a finished one

Sourcing and Quotes

  1. Authoritative sources are not always “right”
  2. Minority Perspectives are harder to get for the fact that they are the minority
  3. Quotes are not “juicy” if they are simply inflammatory
  4. Editors are not always correct, push back when necessary
  5. The best way to find information is to keep digging through one source’s courses and so on. 

Banned Books by Tim Riley

How to Teach Banned Books:

  • The Invisible Fallout
  • “Where they burn books, they will ultimately burn people”- Heinrich Heine
  • A “Challenge” versus a “Ban”
  • About half of challenges result in bans… now “bundled” books, 100s at a time
  • Dont Say Gay Bill, Florida
  • K-12 Ban on the word “Gay” (inappropriate language) 

*1619 Project, Nicole Hannah-Jones (“critical race theory”)

Scholastic - Book Fair (had to pay extra for diversity)

Invisible Fallout→ Chill Effect- overflow effect of the fear

  • Question the framing
  • Establish terms of debate
  •  Teach and Read banned books, then explain how contrary views strengthen democracy
  • Call Out Terrorism against teachers, librarians, civic-minded school boards

 

Two Days of New Experiences | Evelynn Lin '25

It’s pretty hard for me to imagine how fast the trip flew. For four days, it was insanely quick. Everything felt like a blur. 

On November 1, 2023, eighteen of us, chaperones included, traveled to Boston for the National High School Journalism Convention from November 2-5. 

It was a learning experience through and through with each day that passed. To say it was informative might just be one of the biggest understatements I’ve ever made. 

Day one with the team was train day. It was my first time being on a train and public transit for that long. I had never left school midday with a suitcase on a school bus before. A first for everything. I sat with Kaitlyn, and I learned how to be productive and do homework without many distractions for 5-6 hours (thank you, Kaitlyn), and that train rides are significantly cooler than long car rides. 

Before our entire team stepped out onto the platform 6 hours later, 12 of us were left stranded on the train headed to the next train station located in the Southern end of Boston. I had the lovely opportunity to watch the train doors slide closed before I had both feet out the door. I learned in that moment to act fast on a moving platform like a train. I found it both traumatizing and hilarious to see the 7 shocked faces of students and KP who had made it out flash by as we disappeared. 

We thankfully made it to the hotel 30 minutes later. Sleep never felt so good that night. 

Day two with the team marked the official start of the four-day convention. I attended an all-day leadership workshop with Bailey, Joe, and Sasha. The best part of the workshop was getting to be a siren when we got to work with students from other schools in a Charades game. The task was to be a certain given machine, not someone using the machine. I learned how great of a fire truck siren I am. Our group won with other groups guessing our machine in 3 seconds. It was great community-building. 

At 4 p.m., the workshop ended and I left with ideas swirling in my mind about ways I could apply all that I had learned to our very own staff. I felt like Sasha, my co-EIC, and I became closer through this. We just shared so many thoughts with each other and took so many useful notes together in the session. 

I also became friends with and exchanged Instagrams with one of the attendees from a school in Georgia. She was so nice and so cool. I learned in that moment how much talent lies outside our publications and throughout our country. I bonded with many people from all over. 

After our first convention day, the team gathered to go to dinner at Trident. What struck me most was the fact it was a restaurant, a cutesy shop, and a bookstore in one. And they serve breakfast for dinner?! I had Belgian waffles, which were drop-dead amazing. It took me a lot of frantic decision-making to get to that point. Others can testify. I know for a fact Bailey sat watching me nitpick through the menu for 10 straight minutes after she had ordered. The added perk though was the boba. I surprise myself every time finding boba wherever I go. Matcha slushy with bubbles for the win! 

I also almost bought decision dice that curse and help me make decisions. It was honestly the most practical (and perfect) thing for me that I could possibly get in the entire shop. However, I do think KP is slightly glad I returned home without them. “I don’t know how your parents would feel if I was influencing such purchases with this trip,” I remember her saying. 

I learned during that evening at dinner that I take forever to make decisions, or that everyone just goes too fast. I think it’s the latter. 

After dinner, we all attended the Boston Globe keynote in the convention center’s auditorium. The room was jam-packed from top to bottom. I volunteered to take pictures of the event. Going into this, I thought it was going to get boring fast, but it was hands-down the most epic experience to not only sit on the ground right by the stage to take pictures of the speakers with a full frame but also to learn from up close how cool and impactful investigative journalism can be.

Later in the hotel after recapping our day, my roommates and I relaxed and enjoyed each other’s company deep into the night. Besides showering and getting ready for bed, there was a consistent flow of gossip and tea to spill. What happens in Boston stays in Boston, shhh. It was in these four nights that really brought me closer to my roommates, Kaitlyn, Nikki, and Luci. Bailey was also there as much as time allowed her to; I very much enjoyed her presence with us conversing in our both philosophical and silly discussions. I realized in those hours how much I have in common with all of them, and how cool they all are as journalists, artists, and photographers. I was also very glad they tolerated me calling my family and boyfriend every single night. It was a good time. 

If I thought I had already learned a lot in these two days, I was about to be surprised by the amazingly knowledgeable sessions I was to take in the coming days. 

Sessions and Goodbyes | Evelynn Lin '25

Before the trip, we were asked to choose hour-long workshops that sparked interest in what we wanted to learn during the trip. At first, I thought it would be pretty tedious walking from classroom to classroom the whole day and listening to an adviser speak with a large body of people interested in similar passions as I was about a topic I probably already knew a reasonable amount of. 

However, it became painfully clear how wrong I was. 

Friday, November 3 and Saturday, November 4 marked the most insightful part of the trip. With hour-long workshops taking place the entire day, I soaked up so much valuable information and attended workshops that sparked interest in what I wanted to take away most from the trip. 

Day 3 with the team, a nice chilly Friday, I took the sessions Sports Candids, Power of a Team, Beginner In-Design, and Yearbook Redesign. I will admit I got turned away from some of my first-option workshops, but it was empowering to hear from other advisers and peers nonetheless. 

Not only did I learn new things within the newspaper and yearbook world, and ways I could improve what I was already good at, but I also learned what it was like to feel like a college student, to be able to roam by myself. It was awesome. It made me imagine that that will most likely be me as a college student in a few years, which is wild to think about. 

That day, in between all the sessions, we also got critiqued for our work in the newspaper and yearbook as well. It was the first time our newspaper ever got critiqued… and I was eating Ben & Jerry’s in the midst of it.

It was also just as nice getting to take pictures of the yearbook critiques. I was standing on chairs and on my tippy toes for strong angles. I think I looked a little like a madwoman as an expert talked to our staff about the layout, captions, and overall execution of the 2022-2023 yearbook. But it was still fun. 

The following day, day four with the team was the last full day at the convention with more hourly learning workshops. We were up and out even earlier than the day before. My first session was at 8 AM!!! Thank goodness for team breakfasts! The bagels were scrumptious. 

I took Let’s Get Social, Intro to Narrative Nonfiction, From Extracurricular to Extraordinary (led by KP!), Hot Headlines, Cool Captions, What’s the Angle?, and This might hurt you to hear… that day. Some of them were a little bit (or a lot) strange, but I still learned a whole ton. And I took even more notes and continued to absorb everything, like a plant absorbing sunshine and water. 

From 12-1, I took a break from sessions. Instead of eating lunch like a normal person, my lunch hour turned into me walking around the entirety of the beautiful mall connected to the convention center and taking pictures with my camera (don’t worry, I got food afterward). It was giving a hardcore photographer moment. I was obsessed with the displayed flower statues. They were in such delicate poses and created so meticulously with faux flowers. I learned in that moment to bring a charger for my camera battery because I started the hour with a functioning camera and went to my next workshop with a dead one. 

Following the day’s workshops was the NSPA National Awards Ceremony. Seeing the auditorium fill as it did showed me just how immense the competition for these Best in Show and Pacemakers was. Our publications didn’t win any, but it was cool to see what other schools were up to that allowed them to receive such recognition. I learned that even though I think our publications are talented for being clubs, we still have ways we can grow as a whole. 

I can’t say my evening was exactly the best… but at least I got free cannolis. 

Day five with the team was our final day in Boston and our train ride home. It was the first day my roommates and I weren’t late to meet the rest of the squad. In fact, we were the first ones to meet Mrs. Cohen and KP in the hotel lobby. It was maybe my greatest accomplishment of the trip. I learned that if you want to be on time for a convention, you best be at the elevators 20 minutes beforehand. 

Our train ride was as sound as it can be. I sat with Kaitlyn again, and this time, I learned how awful it is to read on a moving train and not fall asleep in boredom or have a dizzy head. I also tried train food for the first time, and it’s not bad. Matteo went with me to the cafe cart, and we talked about how our Boston trips went. I’d say our general consensus of it was pretty decent. The Rice Krispy treats tasted great too (thanks Bailey for the bite). 

We also heard about the JEA award ceremony placements on the ride back, and I was so, so proud of my peers who received Superior, Excellent, and Honorable Mentions in their work, and just as proud of those who didn’t, myself included. It was A++ for effort. 

Pulling into 30th Street Station was maybe the most relieving sight of my life. I enjoyed the trip, but I would be lying in that moment if I said I wasn’t homesick, which I was. Getting off from that six-hour ride and into my mom’s arms a few minutes later was really soothing. 

Marilyn caught a ride home with us, and it was nice recapping the trip with her. Only then did I realize how we were barely together for the majority of the trip. It seemed like we both had a fun time though, whether together or apart. 

I took a nap when I got home.  

Leadership | Joe Lynch '24

There’s no formula for leadership, but there are some strategies.

The first part of leading is having a goal in mind; you can’t lead a group somewhere if you don't know where you’re going. Many people have a very specific vision in mind, and if you are one of those people, lovely! If not, you won’t get very far as a leader. A good metric to use if you’d like to make a change, but you’re not sure what change to make is the “Keep, Change, Stop” approach. This is just 3 lists of parts of staff culture, interpersonal interactions, or general work ethic which you separate into behavior you want to, well… Keep, Change, or Stop.

The “Keep” category is straightforward. Your staff hit their deadlines? Of course you want them to keep that up! When thinking about making cultural shifts to a staff, this part is easy to overlook; if it ain’t broke, don’t fix it, after all. However, thinking these things through along with the bad stuff is important. You can’t assume good culture and practices will be a constant. You, as a leader, need to reinforce the things that you like to see if you want to keep seeing them. Small bits of acknowledgment, as the year goes forward, are crucial to ensuring that the good parts stay good. If all of your energy focuses on what’s going wrong, the things that are right will start to slip. 

“Change” will most likely be the largest category in your list. These are small things, things that would make the experience just a little bit better. The important thing to remember while you’re making this list is that you’re not brainstorming solutions yet; the problem doesn’t need to have a one-sentence solution that someone can think of on the spot. Here, you just need to think about what you would like to change about your staff. Are there systems in place that could be streamlined? Do your upperclassmen not talk to underclassmen very much? Nothing about that is going to ruin your publication, but hey, if you can make it better, who’s going to complain?

“Stop” is reserved for things with a real, toxic effect on the productivity or well-being of the staff. As an example, our speaker gave an example of a previous EIC of hers who, in the spring, did not know the names of everyone on the staff, and seniors treated freshmen as gophers who almost exclusively did boring, routine labor without getting opportunities to improve as photographers or journalists. Who wants to work for someone who’ll bark orders at you but can’t be bothered to learn your name? As it turns out, not very many freshmen. Things like that have the potential to really sink a staff, and especially the quality of the products they make. It doesn't matter who or how, if something has such a profoundly negative effect on your staff, you have to stop it.

With your three categories in mind, you should be in a much better position to start leading your staff in a meaningful direction. If you want to have an effect on your staff, though, you, for better or worse, need to actually talk to them. Nearly everyone can remember being a small fish in a pond, and having the empathy to be the first one to reach out, build relationships with younger, less experienced members can have a monumental effect on the confidence (and productivity!) of those newer members. Talk to them! See what they want to do, and let them do it. Let them make mistakes and be there to correct them while continuing to make them feel valued. Especially on the Strath Haven staff, where everything is volunteer work only, your underclassmen need to be valued, otherwise the book just won't get done.

In short, keep in mind the way you want your staff to feel, and how you want them to act. From there, opportunities to encourage them in the right directions will present themselves, but it’s your job to act on them, and maintain the best trajectory you can. What you do in specific isn't as important as the end goal you end up achieving. If you get your desired effect (e.g. everyone is both productive and happy), you’re doing your job right. If you don't, you have to change it up. Leadership isn't a formula, it’s having clear, defined goals, and staying adaptable, flexible, and compassionate until you achieve them.

Design Manifesto | Joe Lynch '24

Paging back through my notes, I’m just now realizing that my focus this year, as it turns out, was design. Design has always been intimidating to me, especially because there were fewer easily accessible resources on design as there were for, say photography or copywriting. Returning armed with newfound information and general guidelines, I feel much more ready to take on the task of designing some pages in this year’s book. I know I’m hardly a pro -and barely an ameteur at this point in time, really- I think it’d be helpful to throw together the tips I got into a fast-fact sheet which I can hopefully expand into a more fleshed-out set of rules and guidelines when I’m not on a deadline. With some more packets or documents ready for others to read, hopefully design loses its untouchable mystique for others in the staff too. 

Basic Guidelines for a Page

Define margins & eyeline

  • Margins should exist around the edges of the page to keep everything clearly in view, generally these will be defined for a specific book using a measurement system called picas, where 1 pica is one tiny grid box on a page in YearbookAvenue (or equivalent software)
  • An eyeline is a horizontal divider that goes on every single yearbook spread. It spans from the left margin to the right margin and it 2 picas tall. Broadly speaking, they ought to be placed on the top or bottom thirds line (think your Rule of Thirds composition guideline, but on a page), but that rule isn’t hard and fast. Eyelines serve to break up a spread, generally with the main story and dominant photo in the larger section and smaller stories, mods, and other tidbits going below; again, every part of a formula can be innovated on, but that is how most pages will end up getting divided.

Place your Dominant Photo or Dom

  • Your Dom is the best shot you have of your story, hands down. Whatever, whoever, wherever it is, this should be your most visually appealing, highest-quality, most eye-catching shot on the page. Because this picture is the most important, the rest of the spread should revolve around and support this photo, and it should go near the center, but not directly in the center of the spread.
  • The Dom should Cross the Gutter. The Gutter refers to the vertical space that goes between the left and right pages on a spread. It’s important to be careful with the Gutter, because once the book gets printed out, the content in the Gutter will barely be visible, if at all. Puting your Dom over the gutter is still important, though; having it stretch onto each page unifies the design. If your Dom is only on one page or the other, your overall design will look disconnected from itself with the division the Gutter makes.
  • Quick note: Make sure you DO NOT put anyone’s face in the gutter! They will not look good. The picture will not look as good. Nobody wants that.

Add Pictures

  • Your secondary photos should touch the Dom or the eyeline. These, unlike the dom, should not cross the gutter. Because secondary photos are smaller than your Dom, too much information will be lost if it goes in the gutter, so make sure it stays fully on one page or the other.
  • These photos should touch the Dom or the Eyeline, which keeps the spread looking cohesive.

MORE Pictures

  • Aim for 8-10 pictures on a spread if you can find a way to make them fit. You’ll get a lot of faces in your book if you can hit that benchmark for each spread.
  • Vary your pictures in size, shape, and subject matter. If your shots look too similar, you’ll have a static and boring spread. Toss in a portrait crop or two, make sure you have some single subject shots, some group shots, and some of just two or three people, make your stronger shots a little bigger than the weaker ones, but keep the small ones large enough such that we can still see everyone’s face.
  • Experimentation is key! Don't get too married to a single layout. If what you have doesn’t work, shake it up!

Add words

  • Your Headline should be big. Like, probably a lot bigger than you think. A lot a lot. The headline is usually the second thing (after the Dom) that a reader’s eye will go to. Put it in an easy place to spot with some room around it, and put some important text (like your main copy) near it, that way the reader will be naturally guided through your spread. A clear and well-spaced headline can sometimes make the difference in making a spread less cluttered.
  • Text never crosses the gutter. The words are just too small. Your copy will not be legible if it goes over the gutter. Nobody wants that.
  • Text should go near the relevant photos. If there’s space by your Dom, put the main copy there, if there’s space by your secondary photos, put some captions next to them. It should always be clear which photos go with your text and vice versa.

Add white space

  • Counterintuitively, for a book where you’re trying to maximize coverage of the whole school, you don’t actually want to jam-pack every spread all the way until every inch is covered. White space is crucial to making your pages readable, so it’s important to account for it.
  • Don't trap your white space into the center of your spread. Your layouts will be more readable when your elements are packed closely in the center, and white space begins to become more prominent as you get closer to the margins.

One final, very important step: make sure the strong elements of your spread are highlighted! If there’s a jaw-dropping, show-stopping photo in your spread, make it as big as physically possible. If there’s heart-wrenching, awe-inspiring, laugh-bringing copy, give it plenty of space to pop out from the rest of the page.

After following those steps, you’ve successfully made your first four spreads! That’s right, FOUR. Once you have your layout you just made, you can reflect everything vertically, horizontally, and then vertically again in order to make four completely unique-looking spreads that you can use in the same book.

Nobody will know, seriously. You probably won't be able to tell yourself after you put different photos and captions and mods in each.

I don’t do writing, I only take the photos | Nicole MacDonald '25

One of the sessions I attended was ‘Photoshop Workflow’ and it went through the basics of Photoshop and how to use it. The speaker said a couple things that stood out to me particularly when he talked about what we should be doing and not “following the trends.” The speaker said that when going through the process of creating the yearbook you SHOULD NOT do first initial last name ( ex- J.Doe) and you should be doing their ENTIRE NAME (ex- John Doe) and I strongly agree with this and personally think that we should be doing that. He went on to say that when doing this it can help with opportunities for the photographer who will always be clearly recognized for their pictures and can help motivate them with becoming a better photographer and taking stronger pictures.

Another thing that he discussed that caught my attention was about editing photos. He said that when you have a couple thousand photos it should only take you a few minutes to go through them and not an entire lifetime and that when you have a viewer looking at them, they aren’t going to give you a lot of time.

In thinking about how this could apply to the experience at Haven, I feel that the pictures of each student photographer takes should be watermarked with their name. Each of our individual photos would show who took what and not just our name embedded in the picture. It would also be VERY helpful to help make sure we get credited and help avoid mistakes like having somebody else get credit for another person’s work, which has happened to a friend of mine, and to me as well.

Going home

I’m a Boston native and coming back to attend the conference was fun for some parts but also had its ups and downs like most things in life. The train ride was long but I didn’t mind because I just watched some videos and listened to music. When we arrived a couple of people got off at the correct stop while the rest of us missed it & then we had to go on a mini adventure and catch the T. We took the red line, which is the same one that would pass through where my mom worked. Over the summer I came back to Massachusetts and during the time all of the students go back home which made it the easiest time to get around place to place. While I was there I looked at potential colleges that I might be interested in. There was a session called “So you want to go to college in Boston?” and the session itself wasn’t what I expected and what just a bunch of college students talking to us about their experience attending school in Boston and just what it’s like overall.

Reflections on the trip

The trip was decent, not the best experience ever. I felt like there could’ve been a lot of improvement along the way and more student input on things to do and not just being cramped inside of the convention center the entire trip. I’m not fond of journalism and the workshops weren’t really fun for me but I was interested in what the speakers had to say and feedback. I did enjoy talking to people I don’t usually talk to on a day-to-day basis and thought it was nice getting to know them and what sessions/ other things they’ve been up to.

Getting to Know the Team | Matteo Ventresca '25

I first heard about this convention at the end of last school year. I thought that we were going to St Louis in 2022, and then to Philly in 2024. But, when I was told that we were able to go to Boston for a convention in 2023, I was super HYPE for this experience. I already knew what it was like in St. Louis, which is why I was excited to go to another convention. 

The days kept on going and I was getting tired of waiting for this convention to start. I had to take a midterm and some other quizzes before I went so that I didn't have them on my plate when I came back.

It was finally time for convention day one, and I was super excited to start this journey. Seeing people I don’t know was one of the good parts of the sessions. I learned so much about speakers and even other students in sessions by talking to them and seeing how their publication works. 

When we got to our evening reflections, everyone shared one thing they learned that day. From hearing what they had to say, I learned what kind of people they were, and what they liked. 

After reflections, hanging out with friends until our 11:00 room checks was also a great part of the day. Being in a room with a sophomore and a freshman, I didn’t really “know” them. I knew who they were and their role in the staff, but I didn’t “know” them. By spending that time with them, I got to really “know” who they were. 

As the days passed, we kept learning about other publications and how they manage their staff and time. I learned about some apps that could help our communication as a staff and as friends. I also learned that everyone needs a copy editor because there have been quite a couple of mistakes in the past that were turned into gag reels. 

If you didn’t get it by now, one thing I really enjoyed about this trip is that I learned so much about my peers and about others at the convention. I didn’t realize it until I reflected on the entire experience.

Sports Writing | Matteo Ventresca '25

I’ve never really written a sports story before. I’ve written a couple here and there but they weren’t about games or teams. So, writing a sports story was almost completely new to me. I didn’t really know what to expect for the contest.

As soon as I got in the room, I was handed two papers. one was a little background information about what I had to write, and the other was a sheet that explained the guidelines and what the judges were looking for. 

I read the background information immediately. I had to write about a women’s tackle football team called the Boston Renegades. I honestly didn’t even know there was a women’s national tackle football league, so it was cool learning about the team. 

At the start time, one of the judges told us that there were five people from the team that would speak to us. We had to listen to them speak about their team and their championships. Then, we could ask questions for about a half hour, get all the quotes we can get from what they said, and write a full 300 minimum word story. 

Overall, the contest was easy but hard. What I mean by this, is that there wasn't much information to write about so it was easy to put it all together. The hard part was that, since there wasn’t much information, all you could write about was their success

I honestly was nervous because I didn’t know what to write about in the beginning. But, despite the challenges, I found the experience of writing about the Boston Renegades to be eye-opening. It made me really want to explore new subjects for storytelling. 

Writing about them was an insightful experience, and I look forward to discovering more stories in the world of sports in the future.

Session Notes, Friday | Josie Wieland '26

Review a Movie, Review the World

Expertise and Voice

  • Own your expertise
    • Who are you an expert in–not what
    • A great reviewer finds their voice and creates a style
      • “No matter what they’re charging to get in, it’s worth more to get out.” –Roger Ebert
      • - “No good film is too long, and no bad film is too short.” –Roger Ebert
    • Great resources to read lots of reviews in one place: Rotten Tomatoes, IMDB

Five Basics of FILM Reviews

  • Lead: Opinion
    • Allows for creativity not found in news or other opinion leads
    • MUST preview overall opinion but not give it all away~get them intrigued
  • Condensed Plot Synopsis: Objective
    • Include early in the review
    • Brief description of the plot & should emphasize most important moments of film
    • Be careful to not reveal ending
  • Background Info: Objective
    • Looks at facts and info that help create context (budget, genre, etc.)
    • Looks at similarities between different movies
  • Abbreviated Evaluation of Film: Opinion
    • Most important part of review
    • Reviewer analyzes and critiques
    • Focus: Evaluation of what does and doesn’t work & WHY
    • Consider acting, plot/script, entertainment value
  • Kicker: Opinion
    • Always make sure it's clear at the end of the review what your reader should do
    • Short
  • You can review ANYTHING
  • Make sure your reviews do not include spoilers

Prose, Poems, & Drama!

  • Components of Prose
    • Natural Flow
    • Transitioning from one idea to another
    • May or may not be grammatically correct, especially the quotes
  • Transition Words to Help the Flow
    • As a result – therefore
    • Hence – for this this reason
    • Henceforth – starting now
    • Indeed – as a matter of fact – used to make the previous statement stronger
  • Grammatically Correct or Not
    • Yes, when paraphrasing in nonfiction
      • Even though you’re summarizing what someone else said, it's still your writing
    • Yes, when writing nonfiction
      • Important to use correct grammar, although you can still paraphrase and use quotes
    • Not necessarily in direct quotes for nonfiction
      • Accents & and the way a person speaks
    • Not necessarily in drama
      • It adds to our storytelling & what you are creating through this
  • Getting Started
    • Freewrite
    • Create an outline
    • Collaborate with other people
    • Interesting idea: change font color to write so that you aren’t distracted by grammatical errors
    • Write title down and go from there
    • Inspiration from places you travel to 
  • Don’t EVER claim someone’s idea as your own
  • You will always have an audience for your ideas

Punctuation in Poems

  • Necessary or not?
    • Helps convey the message of the story
    • Subjective, varies with each writer and how they use their voice
  • Apostrophes show possession or shorten word
  • Periods mean stop for a moment
  • Punctuation is important if you are publishing online OR read the poem as yourself
  • Edgar Allen Poe – Dramatic Interpretations of Reading
  • Maya Angelou – Did not speak for years, but then became very expressive with her work
  • Paul Laurence Dunbar – “When Malindy Sings”

Drama – Bring the Scene to Life

  • Reveal the character moments
  • Elements of stories include the plot, setting, characters, point of view and conflict
    • Formulate a preposterous or humorous idea
    • Develop those thoughts
    • Write more descriptively! Use action words!
    • Describe the setting vividly ~ make sure the communication between the writers and authors is clear
    • Create an argument between two characters
    • Create a tender moment – a sweet connection between characters

Final Thoughts

  • If you are publishing it, you want people to read it, so write it like someone is going to read it out loud
  • When writing for news, avoid adjectives, because it may seem as though you are biased

 

Session Notes, Saturday | Josie Wieland '26

Up Your Interview Game

  • Three parts of an interview
    • Scheduling an interview
    • Preparing an interview
    • Executing an interview
  • Scheduling
    • Types of people to interview
      • Expert – most informed people about your topic
      • Authoritative – knows a bit about topic, but not an expert
      • Bozo – least informed about topic
    • Pick the Right Source
      • Think BIG – go beyond your comfort zone and look outside of your school, into your community
    • Formatting your letter
      • Salutation – “Dear Mr. So and So”
      • Body – Introduce yourself and your position on staff & briefly explain the story you are covering and suggest several times that your could meet in the next 48 hours
    • Making contact repeatedly
      • A coach – show up at practice
      • An official – tell them that  your will print “declined to comment”
      • An expert – find another source
  • Preparing
    • Find background info ~ Research is Key
      • Other newspapers’ articles
      • Public records
      • Familiarize yourself with the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA)
      • Ask adults for background info on complicated topics
    • Writing Interview Questions ~ Fact gathering & quote gathering
      • Consider questions that aren’t questions
      • Have several follow-up questions planned
      • Ask some questions that you think you know the answer to
      • Always end with “is there anything else you’d like to add?”
    • Yearbook specific questions
      • Phrase questions with “story of the year” in mind”
      • Bigger picture questions
      • What will be relevant far into the future?
  • Executing
    • Keeping records
      • Record every interview
      • Always ask before recording someone!
      • Put the recorder somewhere out of the way for the interviewee’s comfort
      • Keep recordings for one month after publications
      • Check out OTTER ~ app for transcribing recordings
    • Appearance & Attitude
      • Be on time + polite
      • Keep notes on lap ~ more professional
      • Jot down notes ~ things that your source clarifies, questions you have for later, websites/databases that are mentioned
      • Respect their time
    • Start with Soft Questions
      • Ask them their name and other easy questions
      • “Tell me about” questions
    • Be Logical
      • You have a list of questions, but they are only guidelines
      • Be sure that you aren’t asking the same question multiple times
    • Carry the conversation
      • Good interviews are like convos
      • LISTEN!!

Home At Last: How Music Can Inform Your Writing

  • Vowels and Consonants
    • Hard vs Soft Sounds
      • Stars vs Hungry
    • Example ~ Walt Whitman 
    • Example ~ T. S. Eliot
  • Realism
    • Procedural memory – unconscious ability to remember a habit or routine
    • Episodic memory – conscious, like remembering a shopping list
    • Transports you to specific times and places
    • Think of memories like balloons floating in different areas of the brain
    • Songs' realism can trigger our brain to recall memories, sounds, tastes and other emotions. Harness that power to find ideas you want to remember
    • Sleep is important!
  • Melody
    • Legato means “tied together” ~ Sounds and words flow into each other ~ long, drawn out sentences to show a messy & frantic mindset
    • Staccato means cut apart. The notes and sounds are separated more distinctly ~ Example: rap
  • Lyrics
    • Songwriters have little time to tell a story, so an economy of vivid words is important 
    • Introductory clauses, gerunds, adjectives, adverbs “to be” verbs
    • Use less gerunds (“ing” words) to strengthen your writing 
    • Repetition can take the form of alliteration
    • Initial: repetition of consonant sounds at the start of words
    • “Whisper words of Wisdom” –The Beatles, “Let it Be”

Covering Climate: What You Need To Know

  • “Climate change is widespread, rapid, and intensifying” –IPCC AR6
  • Common terms
    • Weather: The conditions in a specific place at a specific time
    • Climate: Atmospheric patterns and changes over long periods of time (decades or more)
    • Global warming: our relatively recent rise in average temperatures because of human activity
    • Climate change: Includes global warming 
  • Key climate questions & terms
    • Why is this happening? Science
    • What are the effects of climate change? Impacts 
    • What is being done to slow down climate change? Mitigation
    • What is being done to prepare, predict and respond to impacts? Adaptation and resilience
    • Who is most affected by climate change? Climate Justice
  • Why is the Earth warming?
    • Greenhouse effect
    • More gas →more blanket →more captured chemicals
    • Ice cores can be measured to identify the amount of CO2 in the atmosphere at the period of history they are froCO2 being put into the atmosphere is unprecedented
  • Why does a little warming matter?
    • A small shift makes a big difference
    • Shift of temp = DRASTIC shift of extreme
  • What are the other impacts?
    • Impact natural systems, agricultural crops, and animals not used to changes in environment
  • Why is climate change unjust?
    • Unequal responsibility
      • World’s richest 10% are responsible for 50% of GHG emissions
      • World’s poorest 50% are responsible for only 10% of GHG emissions
    • Unequal burden
      • Those who are least responsible for climate change are being impacted by it the most, and this will likely only worsen in the future
  • Future
    • Climate models cannot tell us what will happen in the future
    • We need emissions scenarios of the future
    • Representative concentration pathways (RCP)
  • Is climate change responsible for extreme weather?
    • Climate change makes extreme weather more frequent and intense
    • Human-caused climate change exacerbates the effects
  • Resources
    • IPCC (International)
    • National Climate Assessment (US)
    • Climate central
  • Are we doomed?
    • Doomism is not the answer, because there are many possibilities
    • Our decisions now will impact the future, BUT it may take 20+ years to see the impacts
    • Our challenge as journalists is to show people how to make these changes and to understand what could happen in the future

How to Teach Banned Books: The Invisible Fallout 

Tim Riley - Emerson College

Check out Now & Then by The Beatles

“Where they burn books, they will ultimately burn people” –Heinrich Heine 

  • Banning
    • A “challenge” versus a “ban”
      • About half of challenges result in bans…now “bundled” books, 100s at a time
    • Don’t Say Gay Bill, Florida
      • K-12 ban on the word “Gay”
      • Inappropriate language
  • Random sampling of banned titles
    • STANDBYS:
      • Beloved, Toni Morrison
      • 1984, George Orwell
      • The Great Gatsby, F. Scott Fitzgerald
    • Picture Day, by Sarah Sax
    • Chris “Ludacris” Bridges’ picture book, Daddy and Me
  • Scholastic book package
    • Share every story package costs extra money for diversity
  • The chill effect
    • Overflow effect of the fear from one company to another
    • The first invisible effect of censorship
  • Moms for Liberty
    • “We do not co-parent with the government”
    • Pro banned books
    • Feel as though parents should decide what books go on our shelves
  • Final thoughts
    • Question the framing
    • Establish terms of debate
    • TEACH and READ banned books, then: explain how contrary views STRENGTHEN democracy
    • Call Out Terrorism against teachers, librarians, civic-minded school boards
    • Critical Race Theory

 

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  • J

    Julia GrayNov 16, 2023 at 3:53 pm

    Let’s go team!!!

    Reply
  • M

    Matteo VentrescaNov 14, 2023 at 5:15 pm

    GOATED EXPERIENCE

    Reply