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.

Jan. 30

Before the Asteroid Hit
The Mini Page explores the final years of the non-avian dinosaurs in North America before a giant asteroid hit and wiped out all dinosaurs except the ancestors of birds. The Mini Page teamed up with the Smithsonian’s National Museum of Natural History to learn from their new exhibit, “The Last American Dinosaurs.”


This week’s standard:

• Students understand the interactions of animals and their environments. (Science: Life Science)


1. Draw a picture of your favorite dinosaur. Write several sentences about the dinosaur.

2. lisaIn your newspaper, circle words or pictures of animals that are descendants of theropods.

3. Find newspaper photos that show items or animals that are larger than a T-rex, smaller, faster and slower.

4. Divide a piece of paper into four sections. Write a dinosaur name in each section, then write an interesting fact under the dinosaur’s name.

5. Use research to learn more about environmental changes long ago and today. Compare and contrast the sources and effects of environmental dangers from dinosaur days and today.

Feb. 6
Meet Rosa Parks
Recent events around the country have reignited discussion about civil rights and equality. For African American History Month, we learn about Rosa Parks, whose refusal to give up her bus seat to a white passenger in Montgomery, Alabama, sparked a movement.


This week’s standard:

• Students use biographies and stories to understand the individuals who are honored by the nation. (Social Studies: History)


1. Use newspaper words and pictures to make a poster about Rosa Parks’ life.

2. Find three people in the newspaper whom you think Rosa Parks would like to meet. Explain your choices.

3. Find events in your community to celebrate Black History Month. Put a star by one you would like to attend.

4. Collect news stories about minority groups and their supporters who are protesting about their rights. How are these protests similar to and different from the protests during Rosa Parks’ time?

5. Create a brochure showing civil rights activists in your community or state.

Feb. 13
Protecting Land and Animals
The U.S. Forest Service celebrates its 110th birthday this month. The Mini Page spoke with a historian to learn about the service’s origins and its important work today.

Feb. 20
Cats in the Library
For thousands of years, cats have protected valuable books from gnawing rodents. Today, hundreds of libraries throughout the world have cats in residence. They don’t just guard against rodents today, but also help turn libraries into friendly refuges. The Mini Page talked with some librarians and cat caretakers to learn more about the comfort of cats among the books.

Feb. 27
Nelson Mandela
It’s been 25 years since South Africa’s Nelson Mandela was freed from prison after more than 27 years. The Mini Page looks at the life and the contributions of Mandela, who died in December 2013.

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