Creating Journalists at Emmanuel College

A guide for ENGL 2501 and ENGL 3801

Rampaging roosters and Smoking Guns: Assignments for Wednesday

Bantam rooster published to Wikimedia Commons by user Selbymay

Bantam rooster published to Wikimedia Commons by user Selbymay

A reminder, since Monday’s classes ended up being a little weird, of the assignments for Intro to Journalism and Feature Writing.

I’ll back up to my definition of weird. I was stuck in traffic commuting in from Grafton to Boston (that rising sun’s glare blinds everyone) and arrived to my 8 a.m. Intro class just 15 minutes before the start of class. As a result, I was unable to go through my usual control freak check of the classroom computer’s link to my laptop, and my text-intensive presentation on police reporting had to go forward without the projections.

We’ll talk some more about police reporting and news leads (ledes if you’re old school) in class on Wednesday and students will post a police story on their blogs based on this police report. For Friday, read this article on the new Massachusetts law prohibiting the publication of details on domestic violence arrests and we’ll have a class discussion on this and other aspects of publishing details about arrests in the newspaper and online.

Feature Writing students had their first Quickfire Challenge, in honor of the new season filming in Boston. Given 25 minutes to conduct interviews, half the class had to collect reaction on Emmanuel’s new smoke-free campus policy; the other half did the same on Emmanuel’s new wear-your-ID policy. Those are due on blogs by midnight Tuesday although, at a quick glance, a couple students took my advice to just write and get it over with while the details were still fresh in their minds.

Feature Writing students also have a reading assignment for Wednesday’s class discussion: Kelley Benham’s St. Petersburg Times story on the rampaging rooster.

When they heard the screams, no one suspected the rooster.

What details in the story stand out? Thoughts on the storytelling? How do you think the reporter went about collecting details? What do you think about the use of quotes in this story? What is your favorite quote?

 

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