Lesson Plan: Asbestos in the News
Discuss with students any newscasts they have seen and have them describe the format (number of anchors, use of field reporters, use of taped footage, inclusion of historical facts, and so on). Record their responses, and have students add to the list any other aspects that are part of a newscast (interviewer, type and graphics, camera work, special effects, sound).
Outline the Opportunity
Explain to students that they will be preparing a newscast or broadcast feature relating to the demise of the asbestos industry. They can refer to the class list they created in Before Exploring to decide on the format of their newscast and any roles and aspects they want to include. Students can choose from the following topics:
From prosperity to poverty: The closing of a town
Health problems and the effect on the family
Regional economic hardships: A political landmine
Spin doctors: Putting the glow back on the industry
Divide the class into groups and have each group choose a topic. Direct students to the topic Asbestos: Magical Mineral or Deadly Dust? on the CBC Digital Archives website. Have students view the clips for relevant information on their chosen topic.
Revisit and Reflect
Have each group present its newscast to the class. Encourage discussion and questioning following each presentation. After each presentation, students can create charts to summarize the ideas shared.
If equipment is available, students can videotape their newscast.