August 2021 … Healthy NewsWorks adapted quickly when schools shut down in March 2020, pivoting to helping our students journalists conduct their interviews via video. It helped that we had a head start — we had invested in a digital learning management system a few years ago and had modified our curriculum.
Students were able to use their video skills to interview a number of community leaders and experts, including NFL star Malcolm Jenkins and then–Merck CEO Kenneth Frazier. They also had their worlds expanded with the opportunity to interview a kid living a very different life.
Third graders at Gotwals Elementary School interviewed 12-year-old cowgirl Marinna last spring. Marinna lives on a ranch in Nevada where she cares for horses and cattle and is homeschooled by her mother. Our student journalists were able to ask her questions about her daily life, her use (or lack of use) of technology, and what she does for fun. They learned about roping and what to do if your cattle escape — not typical activities for kids in Norristown!
But through their interview, the Healthy Press reporters learned that some things about being a kid are universal, no matter where you live, like enjoying music.