Students seek who, when, where, why and how

Published 12:56 pm Wednesday, November 21, 2007

By By ERIKA PICKLES / Niles Daily Star
NILES – Fifth and sixth grade students from Brandywine Elementary School are getting an early start on their journalist careers thanks to a program which started just last year.
The Junior Journalist Program allows students to get a glimpse of what it's like being a journalist
Students are given assignments, asked to cover events and even take pictures for publication.
The articles and photographs are often submitted to the Brandywine High School's newspaper, Paw Prints, and even other local newspapers.
"The students are very articulate. They do a great job with this. I give them assignments, send them out in pairs and they cover the events by themselves," Martha Shreve, Club Sponsor for the journalist program said.
On Thursday afternoon, members of the group joined journalist program president, Camden Roth, where they explained how the program works and why they enjoy it.
"The club was started last January. Mrs. Shreve asked Elijah (Huber) and me if we wanted to start taking pictures and writing articles about different events going on around the school. It started with just Elijah and I, but other students joined in and we formed the club," Roth said.
The group meets after school on the first day of every month to talk about upcoming events and turn in assignments. Students are then told what they should cover that month.
"It's really a lot of fun and I like that we get to meet new friends and talk with different people," Terrin Norris said.
Alli Srmek, treasurer for the club, said she enjoys the photography aspect of the program.
"I really like taking pictures of the different events around the school," she said.
The students were able to purchase their very own Kodak camera after a fundraiser selling Wendy's coupons for $1 earned them enough money to buy the digital equipment.
"The camera, taking notes and going to the different events really makes you feel like you're a real newspaper reporter," Aaron Wentz, secretary of the program said.
The students even get a chance to train fifth graders who are interested in joining the club for the following year.
"We train them in January and as they get to learn more and more, the sixth grade club members eventually taper off. I think we are going to start prepping third and fourth graders also," Roth added.
Other group members involved this year are vice president Jake Wright, Sarah Fortner, Josh Flanagan, A.J. Millin and Collin Nichols.