News literacy latest: BBC Young Reporter competition and new resources

Find out about a great opportunity for 11-18 year olds.  Plus, London CLC’s Peter Lillington gives an update on the latest news literacy resources for both younger and older children.

BBC Young Reporter competition: make the news

What do young people think the BBC should be reporting? The BBC Young Reporter competition is a great opportunity for  11-18 year olds to get an insight into how the news is ‘made’, including which stories get chosen as newsworthy and then how they are told. 

It’s the third year of this editorial opportunity for young people across the UK to suggest their original story ideas to the BBC – what is it that is relevant to their lives and their experiences that they think should be reflected further in the media?

Story suggestions are submitted online, as text, video or audio and can be from individuals or developed by a group.

Winners will tell their stories on TV, radio, online or on social media with the help of BBC journalists, producers and programme-makers. Stories have ranged from having a stutter to being a Makaton DJ, disability sport to upskirting, the lack of diversity in books to campaigning for a local skate park. This is an overview of last year’s winning stories

Judges include Huw Edwards, Radio 1’s Katie Thistleton, Newsround’s Ricky Boleto, Ellie Flynn and Mim Shiakh from BBC Three, Tina Daheley and The One Show’s Alex Jones.

 The closing date is 31 October 2020, though, so don’t hang about. All the details are available online at

News literacy resources update

On the digital literacy and news literacy front we’ll be keeping you posted about the progress of our News Project, which got off to a good start last Wednesday evening. During October and November teachers will be cultivating in their year five classes a community of news readers/decoders/comprehenders and analysts using materials made available through our partner in the project, First News (the First News iHub and activities linked to the weekly First News newspaper articles). We firmly believe that the benefits for these readers will extend beyond the project, which is going to culminate in November with our online celebration and challenge day. Find out more in this blog post.

Over in the US, Common Sense Education has produced some interesting resources, including some for younger children, on digital citizenship with videos and colouring-in books. For older students,  Project Look Sharp (also US based) has a range of activities, including analysing results from two Google searches, one for “coronavirus” and one for “the real truth about coronavirus,” to reflect on the impact of search terms on the sources that Google recommends.

Back to the UK and the Economist Educational Foundation has recently been producing some great resources using what they term their ‘News Cycle model’, which means that their resources focus on one story for two weeks giving students time to do some initial thinking and engagement with the materials, followed by week two when deeper exploration can happen. There’s a really extensive collection of resources accessible through their newsletter or directly on the website. Recent issues covered within the News Cycle model include coronavirus and the environment, Russia and Tik-Tok.We also like the resources from earlier in the year on Rights and the Internet and Conspiracy theories around Covid.

The Economist Educational Foundation, the Guardian Foundation, BBC Young reporter, First News together with a number of other partners are all part of the News Literacy Network to which we’re delighted to belong.

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Upcoming CPD

Summer primary school computing conference
Summer primary school computing conference

This event will build upon the Autumn computing conference by inviting subject leaders to reflect on their year in the role, sharing their successes and challenges. It will also introduce new ideas, tools and approaches through talks and practical activities led by members of the CLC team, with opportunities for attendees to share their own expertise and experience. Over the course of the conference activities will touch on the three main areas of the computing curriculum: computer science, digital literacy and information technology. We will also feature advice and examples illustrating the use of technology to support blended learning.

- 15:30
Computing subject leaders, Teachers...
Creative Arts, Digital and children – CLC meets More Than Robots online
Creative Arts, Digital and children - CLC meets More Than Robots online

Combining forces for the first time, the Connected Learning Centre and More Than Robots have created a session for teachers, youth organisations, researchers and policymakers interested in the digital provision of creative arts for primary aged pupils.


The Play Observatory - Prof. John Potter

“In their own words”: Westminster Abbey & CLC digital projects - Sian Shaw

Building (and maintaining) a city-wide primary arts curriculum to raise attainment - Kate Fellows

More to be added soon

This interactive and inclusive meet up will include inspiring examples of how technology can be used to support learning in music, visual art and drama in person and online at home drawing on our experiences as Tate Exchange associates and our partnership work with a range of cultural institutions.

This informal event is an opportunity to discuss real examples of what does/doesn’t work, meet colleagues from other sectors working on similar challenges and share useful research, news or updates

The morning will include case study presentations (details below) followed by a Q&A. There will also be an opportunity for a rapid sharing round for launches, project updates or requests for help and a short break to avoid zoom brain drain.

- 11:30
KS1, KS2
Subject leaders, Teachers...

Upcoming Special projects

The News Project
- 14:25

Special project in collaboration with First News Education

For a third year, building on two successful previous projects, we are once again partnering with the children’s newspaper First News, fellow member of the national Making Sense of Media and News Literacy networks. This special project with a literacy, PSHE and citizenship, as well as computing focus, highlights our specialist interest in this important aspect of digital and critical literacy.

The News Project will enable participating classes from year 5 to immerse themselves in news and current affairs using First News and the Bett award-winning First News iHUB, which will be provided free of charge during the school-based part of the project over a six week period. Under the guidance of their teacher, pupils will be supported in their development as a community of fully informed news readers. Classes will test their new critical skills and knowledge in the culminating virtual celebration event which will include a news competition and team-based critical literacy and editorial activities. After the event, schools will be able to use the resources from the day in their school.

The project will launch with an introductory CPD session for teachers to set the context, demonstrate resources and to plan for the school-based activities. 

Initial CPD session - Thursday 21st October 4pm-5.00pm. 

Project work undertaken in school - October and November.

Special event - Thursday 25th November 9.30am-2.45pm.

The Garden Museum

The CLC is once again partnering with the Garden Museum to offer a partnership project for KS1 pupils (primarily suited to Yr2). Located next to Lambeth Palace on the bank of the Thames, the museum has an inspiring collection that provides the ideal stimulus for young learners to explore the world around them.

Pupils will use technology alongside the museum’s collection to explore the wonderful world of seeds.

  • How are they planted?
  • How do they spread?
  • What is inside them?

 The Garden Museum has a large collection of seeds and tools that pupils will engage with.

These half-day sessions will take place at the Garden Museum.

There is a limited number of dates available, so please book early to avoid disappointment.

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