Shine news

Getting your students started

Hello again,

Following on from my last message, now is the time to talk to your students about beginning a team project that will enhance their enjoyment of school and learning and give them great life skills!

Whether it’s recording a podcast, editing, designing, or writing a feature, working as a team on a publication is a meaningful and useful learning experience, and it is also great fun for all involved. All ages can get involved and it is a great vehicle for connecting different age groups in the school. A magazine, newspaper or podcast is ultimately all-inclusive and offers a platform for diverse groups to communicate with their immediate and wider worlds.

Here is what George Thornicroft, who won an award for Best Feature in 2018 as a 13-year-old, has to say about setting up a school magazine:

When creating your own school publication, there is nothing more important than having a vision of your end product. What do you want your final publication to look like visually? What writing style do you want to follow? Do you want to report on in-school news or wider, global news?

Another important thing to think about is the structure of your team. You need to consider whether you will need artists, photographers, reporters, graphic designers, assistant editors and any other roles that apply to your publication.

So now you’ve got your publication up and running; you’ve got your team, you’ve found your style and you’ve released your first few editions. How do you maintain momentum and not let yourself taper off? One important thing is that you should enjoy the process of making your publication. If you don’t enjoy what you do and have little passion for it, you’ll very quickly find that every edition feels more like a chore than a fun hobby. Have fun with your publication! Keep changing it and evolving it into the best version of itself every edition.

Passion and persistence are everything in school journalism so create something you’re passionate about, enjoy the process and you’ll find yourself creating a better publication with every new edition you release.

Sage advice from George – you can watch his interview Shine’s Ask the expert: Get started students with Hannah;

Find out what else has impressed the judges on the website here.

Email Anneliese at to find out more about how to enter – one of our Shine categories is Most Inspirational Teacher… so you never know!

Till next time,

Chair of the Shine Committee