PBS Newshour Extra Website Poster Image

PBS Newshour Extra



PBS site gives kids reasons to care about the news.

What parents need to know

Educational value

Kids can learn about current events, social issues, and current hot topics on PBS Newshour Extra. The site covers a wide range of content, from biodiversity in Ecuador to hate speech on Facebook. Kids will learn how to form opinions on controversial subjects and examine how news stories develop. They also can learn the basics of journalism from the Student Reporting Labs and see how other kids are using those tools to share their opinions and ideas. PBS Newshour Extra isn't particularly exciting, but it does an excellent job of presenting the news in a way that's accessible (and, more importantly, engaging) to teens.

Positive messages
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Drinking, drugs, & smoking
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Parents Need to Know

Parents need to know that PBS Newshour Extra is a website aimed toward teens. It shares all the same news as the regular Newshour, but it does so in a voice that's accessible to younger listeners. The site doesn't shy away from serious content; it covers wars, social issues, and gun violence, for example. It's a great place to start if you want to begin a discussion with your teen on any news topic. The questions at the ends of the articles are really helpful.

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What's it about?

PBS NEWSHOUR EXTRA is a website that provides news for kids and resources for teachers. An offshoot of the daily TV program PBS Newshour, its mission is \"to help high school students understand world events and national issues and answer the question 'why should I care?' about the news.\" The site is broken down into sections: Lesson Plans, Articles, Student Voices, Video, and Subject Areas. Click the i next to any heading, and a little window with more information pops up.

The Student Reporting Labs contain student-generated news reports about how national and global issues affect local communities. Journalism training curriculum is available for teachers to use (including Jim Lehrer's \"10 Rules of Journalism,\" which includes tenets such as, \"Assume the viewer is as smart and as caring and as good a person as I am\"). Kids also can suggest ideas or send their own content by filling out and submitting a form, although it's unclear what they must do next to complete the process.

Is it any good?


Kids who might find the regular PBS Newshour boring will be pleasantly surprised by PBS Newshour Extra. It covers the same issues, but it makes the content livelier and provides extra context. Without oversimplifying content, the site shares news in a straightforward manner and takes kids' perspectives into consideration. It also organizes content into special lesson plans tailored to kids' particular interests. For example, the feature "Neuroscience and Zombies" includes materials explaining how zombies' brain chemistry differs from humans'. The site isn't flashy, but it has a clean interface that's easy for kids to navigate without getting overwhelmed. 

Website details

Subjects:Language & Reading: discussion, forming arguments, reading
Social Studies: events, global awareness, government
Arts: film, music
Skills:Thinking & Reasoning: asking questions, making conclusions, thinking critically
Emotional Development: perspective taking
Communication: asking questions, listening
Collaboration: respecting other viewpoints
Responsibility & Ethics: honoring the community
Tech Skills: evaluating media messages, social media
Pricing structure:Free

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