Using NewsHour Extra Feature Stories
Overview: NewsHour Extra features stories can help students identify and interpret key issues in current events. This activity anticipates one class period, but the follow-up essay might be assigned as homework, or in another period.
Warm Up: Use initiating questions to introduce the topic and find out how much your students know.
Main Activity: Have students read NewsHour Extra's feature story and answer the questions on the reading comprehension handout.
Discussion: Use discussion questions to encourage students to think about how the issues outlined in the story affect their lives and express and debate different opinions.
Follow-up: Students can write an 500-word editorial on the topic expressing their views and send it to NewsHour Extra [firstname.lastname@example.org] for possible publication.
Evaluation: Students are graded on their answers to reading comprehension questions and/or their editorial.
Story: U.S. Goes
After al-Qaida Suspects in Somalia, 1/10/07
1. Can you find Somalia
on a map?
Reading Comprehension Questions: (click here for printout)
1. Why is Somalia in the news right now?
2. What group was recently ousted by forces from the U.S.-backed transitional government and troops from the neighboring country of Ethiopia? And who was that group reportedly protecting?
3. Name the president of the Somali transitional government.
4. When was the last time the United States military was involved with Somalia?
5. Over which city does the Somali government have control?
6. How many governments have run Somalia since 1991?
7. Who helped Somalia form its current transitional government?
8. Why did Ethiopia recently send troops to Somalia?
9. Who is Sheikh Sharif Ahmed and what did he encourage?
10. What happened on Dec. 24, 2006?
Discussion Activity (more research might be needed):
1. What do you think
are the biggest obstacles to forming a stable government in Somalia?
2. What role do you
think the United States should have played in Somalia over the past 15
years? And what role do you think the United States should play now? When
should a foreign government send military forces to another country? Explain
the reasoning of your answers.
Write a 300-500 word essay on any of these topics providing clear examples. Send your completed editorial to NewsHour Extra (email@example.com). Exceptional essays might be published on our Web site.