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We Tried It and Here’s How: Newspaper Blackout from @AustinKleon

I posted to Twitter that I finally tried Austin Kleon’s Newspaper Blackout with my writing class.

Newspaper Blackout by @AustinKleon

They LOVED it!

An awesome teacher, Kathy in AL, wrote to ask me how I did the lesson with my class.  She also reminded me that I’ve been on Twitter a lot, but haven’t put anything here in forever. Thanks for that, too, Kathy! I’m going to get back to this blog!

Here’s what I emailed to Kathy:

Hi Kathy,
I showed my 8th graders several of his videos to start.
Here are the links (I showed them in this order):
http://www.pbs.org/newshour/bb/entertainment/july-dec10/kleon_09-14.html
http://www.pbs.org/newshour/video/module_byid.html?s=news01n42cbqf22
http://vimeo.com/4037584
Next, I read several of his poems and showed them to the class.
We then did a few together on the smartboard (I scanned in a few newspaper articles that I thought would work).
We talked about how Kleon searched, skimmed, and scanned the articles for good words. We practiced circling words with pencil first–using the marker first was tricky (I found this out the hard way!)
I did a few of my own to show them.
Some kids really got it and others just liked writing with the black markers on the newspaper! 🙂 Either way, I think it was a valuable writing activity.
It did take a lot longer than I thought it would. I planned it for one day, but they worked on it for several days.
I’m going to scan and post some of them soon (in my free time *smile*)
I hope you try it. My students loved it! =)
Let me know if you try it with your students! 
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