The Times-News Newspaper in Education program provides print and electronic replica editions (e-editions) of the newspaper at a reduced rate for use in Alamance County (N.C.) area classrooms. Teachers from elementary to high school use the newspaper as a tool for increasing test scores, improving reading comprehension skills, and helping students experience history as it happens.

STEM – Special Feature

Link to STEM Section

Mini Page Topics
MINI PAGE TEACHER GUIDES: Standards-based activities that accompany each issue are now available online. Click bbs.amuniversal.com/teaching_guides.html to find specific activities related to every topic.

March 6

Happy Birthday, NACA!
A dozen years after the Wright Brothers flew their plane at Kitty Hawk, as World War I raged, the United States had fallen behind Europe in the technology of flight. In 1915, the U.S. Congress founded the National Advisory Committee for Aeronautics (NACA). NACA lead America into the space age. NACA scientists planned the Project Mercury spaceflights, transforming into NASA in 1958.


This week’s standard:

• Students understand science and technology. (Science: Science and Technology)


1. In your newspaper, circle pictures/words for aircraft and spacecraft. Write the words in order, showing the slowest to the fastest vehicles.

2. Find five people in the newspaper whose knowledge and skills would be useful to NASA. Explain your choices.

3. Create a notebook with newspaper stories about flying and space travel. Write several sentences for each story explaining why it is important.

4. How are these important to NACA and NASA: (a) Langley Research Center, (b) wind tunnels, (c) Project Mercury and (d) sharing knowledge?

5. Research the development of air and space travel. Write a short piece about how changes in air and space travel have changed our everyday lives.

Standards by Dr. Sherrye D. Garrett, Texas A&M University-Corpus Christi

March 13
The War in Vietnam
Fifty years ago this month, President Lyndon Johnson began attacking the North Vietnamese Army and Viet Cong and launched the Vietnam War, which would continue for almost a decade. In this week’s issue, we learn more about what led up to the Vietnam War and why it was so different from previous conflicts.

Teacher’s Guide: March 13

This week’s standard:
• Students understand how historical events, people, places and situations contribute to our understanding of the past. (Social Studies: Time, Continuity and Change)

1. Divide a piece of paper into two halves. Paste newspaper words and pictures that describe War on one side and Peace on the other.
2. Find three people in your newspaper who could lead peace talks. Explain your choices.
3. Use the Internet to find protest songs that were popular during the Vietnam War. Share your favorite with friends.
4. How were these important to the Vietnam War: (a) jungles, (b) Diem, (c) the draft and (d) guerrillas?
5. Research the antiwar movement in this country. Write a paragraph describing how people protested the Vietnam War.
Standards by Dr. Sherrye D. Garrett, Texas A&M University-Corpus Christi

March 20
Kids as Scientists
Thousands of citizens, including kids, are doing valuable research on galaxies, monarch migration, frog songs, water quality, penguin patterns, humpback whales and hundreds of other subjects. New tools such as the Internet and cell phone apps have allowed a flood of citizen scientists to join in the excitement of discovery. The Mini Page takes a look at the evolution of citizen scientists and how kids are involved.

Teacher’s Guide: March 20

This week’s standard:
• Students understand science and technology. (Science: Science and Technology)
1. Use newspaper words and pictures to make a poster showing the equipment you would use to collect data as a citizen scientist. 2. Collect newspaper stories of local students or citizens who are involved in science projects.
3. Make a list of the skills citizen scientists should have.
4. Why is it helpful to have citizen scientists collect data about: (a) butterflies, (b) beaches, (c) birds and (d) flowering plants?
5. Write about an area or problem in your community where citizen scientists could help gather information. What is the area? What kind of data would citizen scientists collect? How would they collect data? Why is it important?
Standards by Dr. Sherrye D. Garrett, Texas A&M University-Corpus Christi

March 27
Ice Hockey
Once an almost exclusively northern pastime, ice hockey is a popular sport for kids all around the country today. The Mini Page checks into the game to learn more about how it’s played and its origins.

Teacher’s Guide: March 27

This week’s standard:
• Students understand that physical activity provides opportunities for enjoyment, challenge, self-expression and social interaction. (Physical Education)
1. Write “Field Hockey” on half of a piece of paper. On the other half, write “Ice Hockey.” Paste newspaper words that describe each game under its name.
2. List the physical qualities needed by a hockey player. Find equipment in the newspaper to help develop those qualities.
3. Check your newspaper for school or professional hockey games. Choose one you’d like to attend.
4. How are these important to hockey: (a) Frozen Four, (b) power plays, (c) Olympics and (d) safety equipment?
5. Compare the skills needed by defensemen and forwards. Write a paragraph explaining which position you would like to play and why.
Standards by Dr. Sherrye D. Garrett, Texas A&M University-Corpus Christi

April 3

Return of the Wolf
By the 1900s in the American West, most of the gray wolf population had been wiped out by humans. The Mini Page celebrates the wolves’ comeback in the Yellowstone area and discovers more about these beneficial native animals.

April 10
Let’s Talk About Autism
Today, one in 68 children is diagnosed with autism. Chances are good that every child comes in contact with a student who is autistic. With the help of the National Autism Association, we explain the disorder and how it affects children, and offer insights about how to relate to autistic kids and make friends with them.

April 17
Celebrate Library Week
The Mini Page celebrates National Library Week (April 12-18) with interviews with 2015 Newbery winner Kwame Alexander and 2015 Caldecott winner Dan Santat.

April 24
Hubble’s 25th Anniversary
In April 1990, the Hubble Space Telescope was launched into space. Since then it has changed the world’s perceptions of time and space. The Mini Page looks at some of the most significant discoveries of this awesome telescope.

NEW! “Mini Page” Quiz, aligned with Common Core

The NC Press Foundation provides a weekly quiz you can use with the “Mini Page.” It is aligned with the Common Core. Download it here each week (archived copies of the quiz also available). http://ncpressfoundation.org/how-news-connects


Click here for an archive of past issues of the Mini Page