Stewart Middle School is celebrating the relaunch of the Healthy Times with this issue.
It was last printed in 2012. Dr. Deminico, the school’s instructional support teacher said she is excited to see the paper return to the school.
Sixth- and eighth-grade classrooms partnered with Healthy NewsWorks on this issue. Ms. McGorry and Ms. Bissland served as faculty advisors for the Healthy Times.
This issue features articles and illustrations on climate change, resilience, and ways to reduce plastic use. Healthy NewsWorks is an organization that works with teachers and students to create school newspapers, magazines, and digital media. The publications focus on health because it’s an important topic and affects everyone, according to Healthy NewsWorks staff.
Dr. Deminico answered reporter questions about her previous experience with the paper and what she’s hoping the paper will bring to the Stewart students. Her answers are lightly edited for space.
Question: Please describe your prior experience with Healthy NewsWorks?
Dr. Deminico: I started with Healthy NewsWorks in 2012 with my class of second and third graders at Cole Manor Elementary. Watching them learn to be journalists was very exciting. The year after, I became an instructional support teacher and was able to see the program grow throughout our school and throughout our district.
Question: Why did you want to bring the healthy newspaper back to Stewart?
Dr. Deminico: I have witnessed the effect the program has on students firsthand. Having students learn to be writers and investigators in a relevant way is so impactful for students today.
Question: What do you want students to know about the paper?
Dr. Deminico: I want them to know how much they can learn from the process and how fun it is! Interviewing peers, teachers and administrations and creating a real paper is really awesome.
Question: What do you hope the reporters learn by being involved with the paper?
Dr. Deminico: I hope they learn to be better writers. I hope they learn real world skills, and I hope they learn they have a voice and can make a difference in the world.
Question: What do you hope readers [other students] learn?
Dr. Deminico: I hope readers see what students can do and accomplish. I hope they learn more about real world topics from their peers.
Question: How does the paper benefit the Stewart community?
Dr. Deminico: The paper benefits our community because it gives our students the opportunity to write, create and take action. It gives us the opportunity to partner with an organization that enhances our literacy programs and connects the school world to the real world.
Question: How should the teachers share the paper with students? Families?
Dr. Deminico: I hope teachers will utilize the paper as a supplement to lessons in science, social studies, and language arts. Students love to read the paper, especially since it is created by their peers. I know we will also be sure our families are aware and have access to the paper so they can view it at home. The home school connection is essential, and I know our families will truly appreciate Healthy NewsWorks’ presence at our school.
Illustration by Angelina, eighth grade, Stewart Middle School.