Teaching Students About Erin Burnett

In today’s fast-paced world, media literacy is crucial for young minds. It is essential to educate students about prominent journalists and their roles in shaping public opinion. Erin Burnett, an accomplished television journalist, offers an excellent example to teach students about the world of news reporting.

Background Information

Erin Burnett was born on July 2nd, 1976 in Mardela Springs, Maryland. After graduating from Williams College with a Bachelor’s degree in Political Economy, she began her career in finance before transitioning to journalism. Currently, Burnett works as the anchor of the prime-time program Erin Burnett OutFront on CNN.

Throughout her career, Burnett has reported on impactful stories from around the world, such as the Arab Spring, Osama bin Laden’s death, and Hurricane Katrina. Her journalistic work has also extended beyond US borders, presenting reports from China and Africa.

Teaching Approach

1. Research and Discussion:

Initiate a research activity where students gather information about Erin Burnett’s career, her accomplishments as a journalist, and her overall impact on the media landscape. Discuss these findings collectively in-class or through online forums to provide a comprehensive understanding of Burnett’s work.

2. Notable Interviews and Documentaries:

Highlight some of Erin Burnett’s most memorable interviews and documentaries by showing short clips or providing article excerpts to your students. This can help them understand how a journalist investigates different topics and asks thought-provoking questions of public figures.

3. Analyze News Segments:

Let your students analyze one or more episodes of ‘Erin Burnett OutFront’. Discuss various aspects of news reporting such as tone, body language, interview styles and structure. Encourage critical thinking by asking questions about how she approaches controversial subjects or handles political bias.

4. Ethics and Responsibility:

Utilize Erin Burnett’s career as a platform to teach your students about journalism ethics and responsibilities. Discuss the importance of accurate reporting, protecting sources, and being unbiased. Reinforce the significance of upholding these standards as future consumers and producers of media.

5. Role-Playing Activity:

Organize a role-playing exercise where students act as interviewers and subjects to develop their journalism skills. Provide them with tips and strategies to emulate Erin Burnett’s probing interview style. Encourage them to research, prepare thoughtful questions, and maintain professionalism throughout the exercise.

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