Most nights my husband and I relax by lying in bed watching re-runs of The Big Bang Theory or Elementary (while we impatiently wait for the new seasons to start). If we don’t fall asleep before 11:00 (because we’re old, y’all), we’ll flip the station to the local news. We usually don’t watch all of it, but we’ll watch the first half just to “see what’s going on in the world.”
That’s what I always say. I picked it up from my grandmother, along with the expression, “There’s more than one way to skin a cat,” which I’ve said more often lately than I’d care to admit.
As kids get older, it’s important that they see what’s going on in the world, too. In the midst of studying history, science, and math, provide opportunities to discuss current events. Try these resources as a jumping-off point.
CNN Student News. My kids and I have really enjoyed CNN Student News, a 10-minute daily current events news show designed for middle and high school students. It runs from mid-August to early-June each year and can be viewed online or downloaded as a podcast. The new year starts on Monday, August 15.
People have asked me if the show is politically-biased. I haven’t noticed it, but we also haven’t watched since the election coverage got in full swing, so you may want to preview it first.
God’s World News. We haven’t used God’s World News, but I have had it recommended many times. If you’re a Christian family, it’s worth checking out.
Local Newspaper. If you get the local (or even a national) paper, share it with your kids. Either pick out some stories that you think will interest you all (especially if they’re younger) or let them peruse it for themselves and discuss with you the stories that caught their attention.
Watch the news. Watch the news with your kids so that you can discuss local and national events together – you know, so you can see what’s going on in both the world as a whole and your little corner of it.
Time for Kids. Check out Time for Kids online. You can find out what’s going on in the world of science, entertainment, sports, and more. There’s even a kids’ reporter section.
Scholastic News. If you went to public school like I did, you probably remember the little current events magazines we used to get. I don’t remember if they were Scholastic News (Weekly Reader seems to ring a bell), but those are still available and are broken down by grade level.
I don’t know if you have to order a specific number or not. You could get enough for each of your kids and choose a median grade-level, or if you’re part of a co-op, order for your group.
Student News Daily. If you’ve got high school students, you may want to take a look at Student News Daily. It offers daily news features running from Labor Day through Memorial Day with comprehension quizzes on the news stories. We haven’t tried this one yet, but it looks promising. Teachers can sign up for emails with the answers to the quizzes
Dogo News. Dogo News is designed to engage kids in digital media in fun and engaging way. They add new content daily.
Youngzine. I haven’t tried Youngzine, but it looks interesting, particularly for younger students. They offer content on science and technology, world news, the arts, and more. They’re supposed to be launching a new website sometime this month, so you may want to keep an eye out for updates.
Do you teach current events in your homeschool? If you have experience with the resources I’ve listed, I’d love your feedback since we haven’t tried all of them. If you have a favorite resource that’s not listed, leave it comments!